The Karameikos PbP, The Mistery of the Mirror (IC thread)

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Re: The Karameikos PbP, The Mistery of the Mirror (IC thread)

Post by Sturm » Fri Jan 25, 2019 4:30 pm

Westron road, Luln
Scene XXXXVII - Hwyrlen, Flaurmont 5th day, 993 AC


"Well we could say gatormen are very big lizardmen and caymen are small lizardmen. Gatormen look like humanoid crocodiles, if you ever saw a drawing of it. Caymen look like very small crocodiles, they are about the height of halflings. Both can be reasoned with, usually, more than with the lizardmen which are often hostile. Ah, I was forgetting there are the troglodytes too. They look like brown grey big lizardmen with crests on the head and the back, they smell bad and are usually very hostile. And often come out of the ground. Nasty...", Warreck says.

(Crocodiles are present in some regions of the Known World as Sind, Atruaghin Lands and Ierendi, so Bofar could have heard about them or probably he saw a drawing at least).
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Re: The Karameikos PbP, The Mistery of the Mirror (IC thread)

Post by hihama » Fri Jan 25, 2019 5:33 pm

So in practice, if the lizardman is very big or very small, there is a chance it can be reasoned with... Have to remember that.

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Re: The Karameikos PbP, The Mistery of the Mirror (IC thread)

Post by agathokles » Fri Jan 25, 2019 8:23 pm

What about the other guide? Who is this person?

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Re: The Karameikos PbP, The Mistery of the Mirror (IC thread)

Post by Sturm » Sat Jan 26, 2019 10:46 am

Westron road, Luln
Scene XXXXVII - Hwyrlen, Flaurmont 5th day, 993 AC


"This person could be Mirko Novaicov, a notorious pirate who is however a thorn in the side of Von Hendriks, so a friend for us. If you can find him, no human knows the swamp better than him. Otherwise you will have to search for a willing cayman or gatormen. The first could be persuaded with simple trade goods, but the latter will probably ask for a magical object", Warreck says.

(Character created in the Blight Swamp Compilation: The Swamp Folks by Irving Galvez, in the Vaults, but maybe do not read it right now :-)
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Re: The Karameikos PbP, The Mistery of the Mirror (IC thread)

Post by Sturm » Tue Jan 29, 2019 10:01 am

Westron road, Luln
Scene XXXXVII - Hwyrlen, Flaurmont 5-6-7th day, 993 AC


Luln is an interesting place, with many people and stubborn inhabitants. The town is also very orderly, due to the constant external threat and the presence of the Homeguard almost everywhere. There is a small community of dwarves and gnomes in town and also some hill and rock giants, which apparently have an agreement with the gnomes to help in local logging. There is a continuous construction of houses and wall on the outskirts of Luln, due to the frequent humanoid raids. There are some elves around and many halflings from the Shires and from Specularum. All people in Luln are generally friendly but cautious, as clearly everyone fear any newcomer may be a spy from the Black Eagle. Despite this, there is also some trade and visitors from Halag, all closely guarded by the Homeguard, because officially the Black Eagle says he does not have anything to do with humanoids and Iron Ring raids and he is, instead, a victim of raids from Luln rebels and halfling pirates. The people here laugh at such claims and blame the Black Eagle for everything. Anyone around, in taverns, churches or everywhere else, shows contempt and hate for Von Hendriks and annoyance, if not worse, for the Duke who does not punish him.
All this you can easily learn in the two days of preparation of your supplies. Yuri can provide most of it, insisting to gift them for you aid despite Retameron and Desmond offering to pay a normal price for them.
Finally on the morning of Flaurmont 7th, you are ready to go with Warreck. You have still the horses. Warreck shows you the map (http://pandius.com/karameikos-3_2m_draft.png).
"First day should be easy, we will ride 18 miles on road to the village of Zoinok, which is within the area controlled by the Outriders around Luln. Tomorrow will be harder, as we will have to find a local giant, persuade him or her to help us avoid the gnolls patrols and find someplace where to leave the horses, maybe in Zoinok or Pyotrev, depending on the current location of the gnolls. There are 18 more miles of wildlands to reach the swamp, or rather a caymen and gatormen village where you will find, hopefully, your next guide. Questions?"

(Note that my map above is for 1,020 AC, but now in 993 AC Luln is not a dominion yet so the red border around it is not official. Also the position of Rashak Reavers gnoll is only indicative as it varied around the years).
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Re: The Karameikos PbP, The Mistery of the Mirror (IC thread)

Post by agathokles » Tue Jan 29, 2019 4:21 pm

Not from me. I'm ready to move -- I don't fancy this mission too much, but the earlier we start, the earlier we get to the bottom of it.

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Re: The Karameikos PbP, The Mistery of the Mirror (IC thread)

Post by hihama » Tue Jan 29, 2019 5:21 pm

I'll agree with Lucius, the sooner we leave, the sooner this is over. Hopefully...

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Re: The Karameikos PbP, The Mistery of the Mirror (IC thread)

Post by Sturm » Wed Jan 30, 2019 9:55 am

Westron road, Luln
Scene XXXXVII - Hwyrlen, Flaurmont 7th day, 993 AC


The first day of travel is quiet, under a warm sun and in a well patrolled road leading to Arkanites, a small dominion of a Thyatian family, and Zolnok, a Traladaran town mostly inhabited by loggers, farmers and hunters. Both places are fortified with wooden walls and guard towers, Zolnok in particular. You arrive there well before the evening, but Warreck advises not to try to go further in the late afternoon.
Asking around, Taran soon discovers there is a rock giant in town, to whom you could ask some informations about the paths to the swamp.
The giant meets you outside the only local inn. He speak in a low, grave voice, in good Traladaran.
"We have sort of agreement with gnolls. Truce you could say. We still fight, but not step too much in each other territories. They claim the southern Dragos woods. The northern, the elves claim. To Pyotrev and along the Dragos you should go, and ask the elves. They do not like stranger but since you are going to become dragon dinner in the swamp, they will probably let you pass" , the giant says.
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Re: The Karameikos PbP, The Mistery of the Mirror (IC thread)

Post by hihama » Wed Jan 30, 2019 11:00 am

There is a dragon in the swamp? Nobody had said anything about the possibility of meeting a dragon.

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Re: The Karameikos PbP, The Mistery of the Mirror (IC thread)

Post by Sturm » Wed Jan 30, 2019 11:08 am

Westron road, Luln
Scene XXXXVII - Hwyrlen, Flaurmont 7th day, 993 AC


The giant smiles slowly "I would not worry about the dragons. They will not sullen their claws with you, they will send their minions to take care of you, unless you have some great gift for them. You could also bribe the swamp dwellers, but the hydras could still eat you, or you will die by the snakes, by the frogs, by the moving sands, by the poisonous plants, by the disease mosquitoes. Has no one told you in the last hundred years only a bunch of humans came out of the swamp alive?"
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Re: The Karameikos PbP, The Mistery of the Mirror (IC thread)

Post by hihama » Wed Jan 30, 2019 11:18 am

Yes, but I am not a human.

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Re: The Karameikos PbP, The Mistery of the Mirror (IC thread)

Post by Sturm » Wed Jan 30, 2019 11:23 am

Westron road, Luln
Scene XXXXVII - Hwyrlen, Flaurmont 7th day, 993 AC


The giant smiles again. "True, but swamps are not really the place of dwarves, nor of stone giants. I heard the halfling of the Shires have guides who trade with the small lizardfolk of the swamp. But they are on the other side from here. I heard also there is a human who survived the swamp and somehow travels it. He is called Marko, or Mirko. Maybe you should ask about him to the small or the big lizardfolk. Still first you have to obtain the permission of the elves to travel in their woods".
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Re: The Karameikos PbP, The Mistery of the Mirror (IC thread)

Post by Sturm » Fri Feb 01, 2019 4:25 pm

Westron road, Zolnok - Pyotrev
Scene XXXXVII - Hwyrlen, Flaurmont 8th day, 993 AC


"Let's hope the stone the two women gave us will have some positive effect", Kesh says in a hushed voice.
You sleep quietly in Zolnok and the following day you go on to Pyotrev, the dominion of a Traladaran family. This is the same surname of sergeant Mikel in Specularum. You have to wonder if the people here are related to him.
It's a 16 miles long trail to Pyotrev, not much travelled, among wooded hills with a deep undergrowth. The sky is clouded today. By mid afternoon you have covered at least 11 miles, and did not encountered anyone. Warreck is clearly wary and alert.
Indeed suddenly you hear calls which seems of birds or something else, then from out of nowhere lances start to rain toward you. Bofar is hit on the right shoulder. The lance embed itself deep into his flesh, throwing him down his pony. The dwarf find himself on the ground, out of breath, then the pain kicks him hard. Everyone cries in alert and all get down their horses. Lucius and Taradain are barely missed by other lances. Kesh is hit too on a leg, losing control of his pony for a while. You cannot see yet what is the status of the others.
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Re: The Karameikos PbP, The Mistery of the Mirror (IC thread)

Post by hihama » Fri Feb 01, 2019 5:00 pm

Bofar tries to remove the lance.

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Re: The Karameikos PbP, The Mistery of the Mirror (IC thread)

Post by Dervish » Sat Feb 02, 2019 6:59 pm

Taradain dismounts grabbing her crossbow and tries to find some cover to allow her to disappear from site.
Life is alot more valuable when you are strapped to an altar

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Re: The Karameikos PbP, The Mistery of the Mirror (IC thread)

Post by Sturm » Mon Feb 04, 2019 10:00 am

Westron road, Zolnok - Pyotrev
Scene XXXXVIII - Hwyrlen, Flaurmont 8th day, 993 AC


"Damn, we cannot see them!", Bellithiel says, then she start climbing the nearest three with unhuman speed, clearly to shoot at the assailants from above. Taran does the same, while Cardia float above to the nearly branches.
Others have been hurt. Alexei is looking after Sam with Retameron.
Desmond raises his shield and go to the left in the woods, the direction from which the lances came, followed by Dorus, Arteris, Fain Flinn and Retameron with shields raised. Warreck soon goes too.
Proceeding through the undergrowth is hard however. The terrain is uneven and there are a lot of overgrown bushes with thorns.
Bofar removes the lance, almost passing out for the pain. He has a hole on a leather connection of his armour on the shoulder now and he is bleeding.
The horses are scared and are wandering around, but Taradain and others manage to take cover on the right of the trail, amond the undergrowth.
Still, seeing the enemy is extremely hard as they are hidden in the woods and there are also the horses and your allies in front of you.
Ludovico, Keio and Sara shoot with crossbows, but apparently they hit nothing.
Bellithiel and Cardia however, one with the bow and the other with magic, hit something in the woods, as you hear at least two snarls of pain.
All that Taradain can see are confuse shapes among the woods, possibly gnolls?
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Re: The Karameikos PbP, The Mistery of the Mirror (IC thread)

Post by hihama » Mon Feb 04, 2019 10:28 am

Bofar looks around to see if there is anyplace to take cover to tend the wound.

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Re: The Karameikos PbP, The Mistery of the Mirror (IC thread)

Post by agathokles » Mon Feb 04, 2019 11:20 am

Lucius looks for cover, and helps Bofar get out of the open.

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Re: The Karameikos PbP, The Mistery of the Mirror (IC thread)

Post by Sturm » Tue Feb 05, 2019 3:41 pm

Westron road, Zolnok - Pyotrev
Scene XXXXVIII - Hwyrlen, Flaurmont 8th day, 993 AC


Lucius helps Bofar and they try to hide on the right of the trail among the bushes. Together they manage to staunch the blood from Bofar's shoulder, at least for a while. In the meantime another volley of lances fly toward the warriors from a short distance. All of them are hit, but armors and shield take the blunt of it, except for Dorus who falls down. Bellithiel, Taran and Cardia shoot again, but it is not clear if they managed to hit something.
Ludovico, Keio and Sara shoot too, and you manage to hear at least a grunt of pain. Keio is busy tending the wounded Sharrlaya.
Halia, Nicola, Kesh and Alexei look vexed, they cannot target with magic a enemy they do not see.
Halia however manages to animate some branches and thorns to create a barrier, then urging Retameron to retreat behind it.
Desmond is clearly infuriated, but the attackers apparently retreated more deeply into the undergrowth and he can hardly pursue them. He finally retreat behind the animated branches with the others, carrying Dorus back to the trail.
Desmond immediately calls for Ludovico and Sara. They begin to frantically try to help the warrior, but you can clearly see Dorus has an horrible wound on the throat, and you see no chance he could have survived that.
Kesh comes near Bofar, healing the dwarf enough to ease the pain and stop the blood. Alexei does the same for Sam and Sharrlaya.
Sara has tried to heal Dorus, but she then shakes her head sadly.
"I should teleport with him back to Kelvin", Nicola says. Your father could save him.
Desmond is clearly torn. "It's risky for you and we will surely loose two people instead of one. You will not be able to find us and return", he says.
"I cannot let him die if I can try to save him, please milord", Nicola says.
Desmond nods. The wizard of the Knights of the Griffon grabs the arm of Dorus, read a scroll, and disappears.
"I think they will return. Me and the other elves should go hunting for them. We are the only ones who can track and keep them at bay. I think they were gnolls", Bellithiel says.
Desmond, Arteris and Retameron agree. Bellithiel, Taran and Cardia prepare and then disappear into the underwood.
Warreck urges all the others to go on as quickly as possible.
"Rashak's Reavers. Damn bastards. They serve the Black Eagle. Only a monster like him could ally with beastmen. They will pursue us to the gates of Pyotrev. We so really hate them! I hope your elves are good" Warreck says.
"Let's hope so. We are not arrived in the swamp yet and we have already lost two men", Kesh says.
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Re: The Karameikos PbP, The Mistery of the Mirror (IC thread)

Post by Sturm » Thu Feb 07, 2019 10:47 am

Westron road, Zolnok - Pyotrev
Scene XXXXVIII - Hwyrlen, Flaurmont 8th day, 993 AC


Tired, you arrive in Pyotrev by the evening. It is another heavily fortified community, with wooden wall, turretts, moat and defensive spikes all around the place. Warreck, Alexei and Retameron can guarantee for the group, so you easily obtain access and are hosted in the only public place, a sort of inn which has only a common room and a basic dormitory for travellers.
Warreck speaks with Ivan Pyotrev, the leader of the local community of mostly loggers.
"Damn gnolls are a pain. We have tried unsuccessfully to push them away, but they are numerous and know the forest well. If you really want to reach the swamp you should go searching for the wood elves. If you can find them, which is not easy. They do not trade with us", Ivan says.
Later when you are eating something for dinner, Bellithiel, Taran and Cardia return, exhausted but alive.
"We managed to drive the gnoll away from you and then we doubled back here. It has been hard, they know the forest very well and are good in concealing themselves", Bellithiel says.
Warreck then brings the elf up to speed with what Ivan said. The three elves of the group look at each others worried.
"We are all three Callarii elves, and have lived in this land for only the last 1,800 years. The Vyalia elves of the east are here since a a much longer time, 3,300 years. Yet the Lindenelm elves of the Achelos woods are here since before their time. But the Vyalia refused to have relations with them and urged us, the Callarii, to do the same, because the Lindenelm elves were servants of Entropy. The tale says they served vampires, and brought other elves to their vampire lords to be used in magical experiments. For this, all other Karameikos elves refuse to have anything to do with them", Cardia explains.
"It might be better to take our chances with the gnolls", Taran says drily.
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Re: The Karameikos PbP, The Mistery of the Mirror (IC thread)

Post by Dervish » Thu Feb 07, 2019 9:55 pm

yes i would prefer to deal with the gnolls as opposed to entropy worshipping elves
Life is alot more valuable when you are strapped to an altar

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Re: The Karameikos PbP, The Mistery of the Mirror (IC thread)

Post by Sturm » Fri Feb 08, 2019 10:56 am

Westron road, Zolnok - Pyotrev
Scene XXXXVIII - Hwyrlen, Flaurmont 8th day, 993 AC


This starts a discussion among the group as Retameron had hoped the elves could guide you to the swamp, and both the rock giant and the local humans seemed to think so too. Warreck says the elves are reclusive, but there is no memory they ever dabbled in undeath or attacked humans. Ivan Pyotrev however says there have been mentions of an elven outcast who leads some men of the Iron Ring. There is no clue however he could be one of the elves of the Achelos wood. There are basically three ways to go to the swamp. One is walking on the north shore of the Dragos river, in elven territory, for about 18 miles. There isn't really a trail, so the trip could easily take two days. The same is true by following the river to the south, in gnoll territory. Otherwise, it is possible to descend the river in a raft. That should take only one day, but a raft is visible and could be attacked.
"Opinions, doubts?", Desmond and Retameron ask everyone.
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Re: The Karameikos PbP, The Mistery of the Mirror (IC thread)

Post by hihama » Fri Feb 08, 2019 11:50 am

I'll rather take my chances with the elves in forest than with both elves and gnolls in a raft in the open river...

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Re: The Karameikos PbP, The Mistery of the Mirror (IC thread)

Post by Sturm » Tue Feb 12, 2019 4:26 pm

Westron road, Pyotrev and Achelos woods
Scene XXXXVIII - Hwyrlen, Flaurmont 8th-9th day, 993 AC


"You have a solid point Bofar. The raft would be quicker but dangerous. Despite the doubts of our elven friends, I think the elves are still our best chance. At least they have not recently attacked nearby humans, while the gnolls certainly have done it multiple times", Desmond says.
The others agree with this idea, and so it is decided you will leave for the western forest the next morning. Warreck will accompany you to a nearby place in the forest where Ivan Pyotrev says they have meet occasionally these mysterious elves, mostly because they wanted assurances that the humans would not log in the south west, but only to the north and east. Some of you, as Sam and Sharllaya, were wounded but Kesh, Alexei and Sara are able to completely heal all the wounded by the evening, including Bofar.
The next day you leave Pyotrev in the early morning. Warreck accompany you to the spot in the forest, then he wishes you good luck and leave to return to Luln.
"We could go exploring around or just wait here for these elves to show up", Taran says.
"Probably a numerous group of mostly non elves walking east in the forest will draw them quickly enough", Cardia says.
Desmond and the others decide to proceed. It is a sunny day, but the woods are so thick you are perennially under their shadows. Also the terrain is rugged and full of brushes and thorns, so it is really hard to find a path among the vegetation and not get lost. You soon realize you would be lost quite quickly, if not for the elves guiding you, particularly Bellithiel who has some experience of wilderlands travel.
It's almost midday when a female elf, red haired, a bit bronze skinned, simply dressed in brown and green, appears out of nowhere in front of you.
Bellithiel signals to stop. As agreed no one draw weapons or does threatening gestures. You are sure there are many more elves in the woods around you.
"You are a numerous and heavily armed group, what you are doing here?", she says. Her elvish is a bit hard to understand even for those of you who know the language.
As previously agreed with the others, Bellithiel speaks first explaining you need to go into the Blight Swamp to retrieve a lost object which could be the only way to save Karameikos from a terrible enemy. The female elf listens intently, then she says she will return soon, asks you to wait here, and disappears back into the woods.
"I hope they will not start firing arrows now", Alexei says nervously.
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Re: The Karameikos PbP, The Mistery of the Mirror (IC thread)

Post by Sturm » Fri Feb 15, 2019 4:15 pm

Westron road, Achelos woods
Scene XXXXIX - Hwyrlen, Flaurmont 9-10th day, 993 AC


Nothing happens until the female elf reappears, along with a male elf, bronze skinned as her.
"We will guide you to the swamp, if you really wish to die there. We will sleep in the forest tonight. You will not be allowed to light fires", the male elf says.
Desmond and Retameron agree on the conditions, and the elves guide you trough the thick forest. Taran tries some conversation with them, but without results. By the evening, they guide you to a small clearing. You eat cold rations and sleep without a fire. Fortunately the climate is warm and the mysterious elves apparently can keep any threat away, as the night is quiet. Still one of you is always awake, just to be sure.
The next day you walk again through the thick forest, seeing often birds, insects and small mammals, but nothing dangerous.
By evening you are out of the forest, and the swamp is in front of you. You see large areas submerged, but still a lot of trees which prevent much visibility in the distance, which is also hindered by a low mist and the incoming dark.
"From here, the territory is dangerous. We can tell you the people of the swamp have a village directly to the north west about 1 and half mile from here. It's just an hour walk, even being very careful where you step, as you should be. Also there is an elf dwelling in the swamp, leading humans. We want to say he is not one of us, but one of yours", the female elf says, indicating Taran, Bellithiel and Cardia.
Having said that, she and the male disappear back into the forest.
"Well that went better than I feared it could go", Alexei says.
"We may know who this elf is. A renegade who was exiled by our people. Not much wonder he could be a bandit now", Cardia says.
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