Danzer

A merchant's wife in trouble
Adventures in Danzer!

The first few weeks have passed, with many events unfolding. Hearing news that a nearby merchant was a day or two later than anticipated, a group of adventurer’s ventured out. They were looking to investigate a simple matter, hoping to find a broken down wagon or perhaps a missing horse. Much to their surprise, they happened upon a wagon, charred, through and through. At this distance, they could see someone in simple robes moving around the ashes, seemingly growing in both concern and agitation.

Cautiously, the adventurers converged on the man rooting through the wagon. Greeting him, they quickly found he was a wandering monk, who felt a pulling eastward and happened across the wagon while traveling. He was checking the wagon for signs of struggle, or fighting. Upon inspection, it became apparent that this wasn’t an accident. The wagon had been burnt completely, with remains making it apparent someone had perished inside. After examining the area, it became clear that someone and the items contained inside the wagon had been dragged off the main road, before set ablaze.

As they turned to investigate deeper into the woods, a courier was seen rushing eastward, as if the devil himself was chomping at its heels. Stopping the courier briefly, they heard he had a dire message to his royal majesty, in Lothidda. Without so much as a dismissal, he resumed his journey with a new haste, as if the brief pause could have been the undoing of some great need.

Continuing into the deep of the woods, they ventured across a group of cavorting brigands, drinking merrily at their recent successes. Converging on some of the members, the adventurers quickly disabled a man, but not without raising alarm. After the alarm was raised a couple of the bandits rushed southward to where their compatriot had hollered. Upon arriving, they were quickly ambushed and defeated. Their morale was quite thoroughly broken, when a half-elf reached out with her scythe and deftly beheaded what could only be considered the leader of the entourage.

One scout had been sent to investigate the camp, wherein he encountered a woman quite beautiful. She was tied up and squirmed anxiously as he grew near. He ungagged her, only to hear her shriek in hushed tones, “We are not alone!” This drew some fright out of him, as indeed, a fellow came barreling out of the dark trying to stab him. The assaulter’s knife clattered out of his hand with such an ill-aimed attack, but he recovered and attempted to use the remains of a rum bottle as an improvised weapon.

In short order, the assaulting fellow was slain, the woman freed, and the scout rummaged through the camp of the ruffians. The adventurer found a pretty emerald ring and kept it to himself, being sure none saw his new found treasure. As a group, they caravaned to the nearby town, using the remaining thieves as carthorses of a sort, pulling the remnants of the merchant’s belongings to town.

When they arrived at town, they were greeted by the blacksmith and housed on his coin. They rested the night and woke to effusive thanks and payment from the smith. He was incredibly grateful for their saving of the woman and delivering the goods for his trade. They were then dispatched eastward with her, on the promise of more good coin and a relatively uneventful trip to the palace. Together, they embarked on what would unknowingly be a long and tiring adventure, filled with rich rewards and incredible experiences.

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Lothidda's peril
Adventures in Danzer!

Starting the day bright and early, the adventurers rejoined the merchant’s wife, preparing to head eastward. She was headed onward to Lothidda, to finish her husband’s works (delivering an item to the king). The group of adventurer’s were offered monetary compensation for escorting her fully there, promised rich rewards for her protection. As such, Traice was inclined to follow along, especially after a maiden so beautiful (not to mention, grieving and needing a consoling embrace). Having imbibed too many fluids in the tavern, Ayaria was unable to be woken. She seemed be bloated and perhaps had drank something that didn’t agree with her. As such, she was incapacitated and nothing but a nuisance for a couple weeks in the wagon, too enfeebled to raise.

On their travels, they chanced upon a lovely hamlet, built into a rolling hillside with a church tower on top. While staying the night there, Kevros decided to offer his healing prowess in the town. An elderly man was found, knocking on death’s door in a church’s bed. After revitalizing the elder, Kevros was beseeched to take an item he seemed fond of: a set of prayer beads appearing to foster some magical ability, but weakened by the area’s mystical dampening effects. Pressing the beads in Kevros’s hand, the man thanked him and was taken home that night.

Once they left the hamlet, they reached the kingdom’s castle shortly, a week’s travel from the town. At one point, a rowdy group of brigands were frightened off, but nothing seriously untoward happened while travelling. Upon reaching the king’s land, the group was given time to wander the town and prepare for their royal meeting the next day. After browsing the city’s market, the adventurers determined they were in need of more coin to obtain better arms. The next morning, the group reconvened with Selene, finding her in an incredibly beautiful gown.

A couple of the group noticed a fairly odd chain around her neck that dangled beneath the folds of her dress, holding a skull-etched pendant. Kevros thought he detected faint evil coming from the chest still, but kept his concerns silent, trusting the time was not right to speak up. Once the adventurer’s were brought to the throne room, their weapons were peacebonded. R’Hawen’s scythe was confiscated, much to her annoyance, since sufficient peacebonding was rather difficult for such a large weapon.

The king greeted them warmly, as Nex Necros had been long awaiting their delivery. Opening the chest, the overwhelming power of its contents nearly blinded Kevros, as he detected an unbelievable evil coming from the crown. As Nex put on the crown, a black pulse left the crown, moving outward and filling the room with an emptiness and an unnatural darkness. Suddenly, a horrible rending occurred; a deep tear ripping the fabric of the adventurer’s souls. They felt their very essence being ripped away, slipping like sand through open fingers. Somehow, they seemed to survive the hurricane of power and the king’s true intent became apparent. Every guard in the room was an eerie bleached white, having lost all their skin, left with only their bones. However, they didn’t fall, as a corpse should have. Rather, they remained standing at attention, seemingly to await orders.

Nex cackled in glee, kissing Selene deeply. The two of them seemed to have forgotten about the adventurers, regaling themselves with how they had finally rebuilt the crown and gained dominion over the kingdom. As they were chatting, Kevros’s iron tight grip on the prayer beads crushed one of the gems. A white aura seemed to envelop him and all of his allies near. Nex suddenly realized that the crown hadn’t destroyed everyone near him. Turning and glaring at them, he stretched his hand out sending all the skeletons in the room charging after them. Just as suddenly as the white aura reached a climax, the skeletons reached them… poof

The adventurers suddenly found themselves in some form of manner. Next to them was a sickly looking old man in bed and they could see dark skies on the horizon, out the open window. This man was the same that Kevros had healed. Apparently they had used the prayer beads to come to him, as a sort of refuge. The man was woken and looked at the people in his house with shock. Quickly recounting what happened, the man explained what little he could, since he could feel himself perishing. The Waste had claimed the tips of a hand thus far and was slowly working towards the palm of his hand.

He swiftly explained that the seal over this portion of the kingdom had been broken, freeing magic. Since the magic was sealed to prevent a planar incursion of the Negative Energy Plane, there was a rebound effect, sending a necrotic energy out of the epicentre, wherever the event happened. Any life in the range, should it be weak, would be both destroyed and reanimated. As he said this, he moved the adventurer’s to his private treasury and suggested that each person take something of use to them, but not to grab too many items, for fear of their magicks being restored too quickly and terrible interactions occurring. R’Hawen leapt at the chance to replace her old scythe, Kevros found a duster well suited to his firearms uses, Traice found a useful dagger that had a sparkling ruby in the hilt that drew his eye, and Ayaria picked up a bow to replace the dilapidated one she had used for numerous years.

The man then began to finish his transformation to the undead and hollered for them to leave and seek the kingdom of Sevan for aid. Sevan would know what to do, being the neighboring country to Lothidda and constantly keeping their more questionable motives in check. After leaving, they found themselves in a town surrounded by undead. Searching the various homes turned up a mix of people not yet turned and their family members having been replaced with walking corpses. At one point, a terrifying child seemed to be possessed, wielding what appeared to be a whip made of fire and laughing in blissful glee as she destroyed what was once her home and slaying her previously beloved father.

Fleeing Lothidda as quick as possible, they eventually stepped onto the land of Sevan, where the skies weren’t a preternatural dark, overcasting the land. When the sun kissed their cheeks, the adventurers felt blessed to have escaped with their lives. They then encountered a courier, headed east, and stopped him by knocking him off the horse (as Traice had learned how to use his ring). Once the courier had the situation explained to him, he headed westward, carrying word of what had happened back to the king of Sevan. The weary adventurers then took the first rest in two days, sleeping long into the next day. R’Hawen rose first, always ready to be moving forward. She commented, forebodingly, “The sun no longer rises in the east. I shan’t sit idle till it no longer sets.”

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Poison, Tarot cards, and an impending invasion
Adventures in Danzer!

After fleeing the plagued land of Lothidda, the adventurers reached Sevan within a week’s travel. Shortly after returning to Sevan’s realm, the adventurers hurried to alert the king of what horrors had occurred in his neighboring land, Lothidda. As they moved towards the castle, they encountered a courier heading forth, into the barren kingdom as quickly as possible. The courier was stopped by Traice, forcefully removing the man from the saddle with a bit of a knock to the side, using his ring. The adventurers quickly explained to the man that Lothidda was lost to hordes of undead, and traveling the land was suicide. The messenger took this badly, looking crestfallen. Muttering to himself, “My blasted son decided to go off to the military, and this is the reward he gets?”

Turning back westward, he had the horse plod along with the adventurers, his eyes lowered. After a couple days, they could see the castle’s gates and rushed inward to inform Sevan’s king of Lothidda’s folly. Shortly after the adventurers sought an audience, one was granted, with very few guards. Fortunately, Ayaria rose from her sickness this day and was able to rejoin the party when they went to speak with the king. The king had a cloudy expression on their face when they entered, looking as if a 2 ton Roc had rested upon his shoulders. Beside him stood his advisors and the courier they had traveled with briefly.

There was a brief pause as the group entered, as each had the gravity of the situation refreshed when looking around the room. Quickly recounting events as the unfolded, they were stopped when they mentioned Selene. The king heard that name and interrupted their recounting to say, “My Selene? Where have you seen her? She’s been missing for several weeks.” There was a fair amount of confusion as they explained she was both the merchant’s claimed wife and the ruler of Lothidda’s. In disbelief, the king refused to hear any ill spoken words of her and urged the adventurers to continue their telling of events. Once they finished the king thanked them each and told them they were free to stay within the walls as long as they wished, although they might become trapped in due time.

Offering up their abilities, the adventurers dispersed into the town to either relax or assist in building preemptive battlements to deal with the impending invasion of an undead army. Kevros went with the clerics to fortify the religious protections and place symbols on the outer walls to forestall any weaker undead from setting foot within the gates. Traice went around the city to investigate for any store or library that might have some book on what magical artifacts may have been used to unleash the necrotic blast he saw. R’hawen went to a pub to relax and drink her sorrows away. Ayaria went to see if there was any place she could use her martial skills to aid.

While Ayaria was looking for anything in the city that would allow her to maintian her physique and test her skills with the locals, she encounterded the militia captain running a friendly competition to see who could outperform him in various feats of strength. After swiftly besting him with the bow, she quickly befriended him. They talked back in a pub at the end of the night and she found he used to be in charge of the kingdom’s knights, but passed the right on to the youth of this day and age (much to some folks’ disagreement). While having dinner with him, he was poisoned, and some tracks of the wrongdoers were found in the kitchen’s stores.

Swiftly departing, Ayaria and companions struck out to find those who aimed to remove one of the city’s remaining defenses, a natural leader of the people. Tracking back the poisoners to an abandoned house, Traice inspected the area. Seeing nothing of note, he took his first step on to the porch which was thoroughly trapped, much to his surprise. Setting off the trap caused the inhabitants to provide resistance at first, then forcing out Slaen, a small child they claimed poisoned the captain. After tossing Slaen from the second story window, the older bandits ran off into the night, one quickly killed by Ayaria’s bow and the other narrowly escaping death.

Seeing the youth on the ground, R’hawen felt semi-responsible for him and requested Kevros’s assistance in preventing his early demise. Slaen was badly injured after having been thrown a couple of stories. After Slaen was able to stand, he began to follow R’hawen at a distance, secretly wishing to be as strong, independent, and kind as her. When the group got back to town, Traice went to have his ring identified by the local magic shop, and met with a strange gnome, named Baldrin. He quickly took the ring, informed Traice it was a ring that allowed him to manipulate the world simply using his mind, and showed him how to use it correctly. Handing it back to him, he wandered off, walking up one wall and peering down at him, intently.

While Ayaria was talking to the militia captain, he spoke of an old Tarot card that had been handed down to him from his father. Supposedly it was a very powerful artifact, but as far as he could tell it was plain and useless. Traice, having looked around earlier for books on the crown Lothidda’s king put on, asked to see the card, in case it was related. Showing a few passages to the captain, there was a quick search and the card was handed over to Traice to inspect. While looking through the book, the evidence was inconclusive, so it was suggested Ayaria take it to Baldrin and see what he made of it. After seeing it, Baldrin snatched up the card and quickly retreated for the night claiming he needed to do lots of tests on it.

The next morning the card’s association with the crown was confirmed. The king then enlisted the aid of the adventurers in determing the uses of the cards and to come back and save the kingdom before they fall to the undead horde approaching from the east. Offering gold and supplies, they were quickly rushed by the king to the castle’s gate. By dawn, the horde was visible and the adventurers were ushered out, having promised to be back by the 60th sunrise from now. The king swore the city would not have fallen by that morning. The adventurer’s looked over their shoulders only temporarily, with the need for haste speeding their movements. They knew this wouldn’t be the last time they saw the castle, but they hoped the next time they saw it the battlements stood proud and a new king had yet to claim the throne.

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