Rhogar's journal

day 1 – Padstow

what does a guy need to do to get a little peace and quiet in this damn town? people are way too friendly. they expect you to just drop all your shit to help total strangers fight giants? seriously? way too friendly.

I dropped all my shit to help strangers fight giants.

oh good, necromancy. just what I was looking for.

oh, even better, the chipper elf gave the necromancer his creepy amulet back. that’s not a bad thing at all. why am I still talking to these people?

bunking with these loonies. Gods help me.

day 2 – still Padstow

the chipper elf took off without saying anything. oh well. maybe I can shake the orc now.

of course we’re going back to the necromancer’s lair to look for him. why wouldn’t we?

found the chipper elf. maybe she didn’t just take off after all.

clerics are mostly useless. or maybe it’s just a human thing

couldn’t revive the elf. I don’t think she’s dead, though. useless cleric couldn’t fix it either.

at least this means we’re heading to Riket.

day 3 – heading to Riket
way too early to be up.

goddamn guards everywhere

they weren’t guards.

who do these Splitcloaks think they are? dressing up like city guards. amateurs. taxes? please.

day 4 – Riket
chipper elf is out of our hands now. this Kristi seems like she knows what she’s doing more than that useless cleric.

why am i still bunking with the orc? we could have gotten our own rooms…

why is no one going to Valta?

okay what’s the deal with this orc and the elves that flock to him? why are they like this? how are they so… optimistic? AND WHY DO I KEEP FOLLOWING THEM AROUND?

I hate rats. I hate orcs. I especially hate elves.

and yet I can’t seem to shake this worry about the chipper elf. i would happy lock the other elf in his room though. nattering on about ~~destiny~~

day 5 – still Riket
I should have just gone to Valta.

Bug's journal Pt 1

Day 1

It’s my first day on my own and first time outside Riket. I got told that this was the best way to continue my training; that getting out to see the world would help open up my mind and broaden my experiences or something like that. Jannda can get really long winded sometimes and I don’t always listen


Made it to this nothing town called Padstow. Met a couple of fellow travelers. Starflower is a sailor which seems cool. Never been on a boat before. The other guy, Rhogar, is a little weird. I don’t trust him.

Turns out people are shit no matter where you go. Some farmer guy in town was into dark magic, like raising the dead dark. He ran off and now we’re headed right back to Riket to get aid for Padstow.

Hope Jannda doesn’t find out I’m back already


Day 2

I hate the sewers


I hate rats
(Not you pickles)


I really hate the sewers


got bit by a rat guy in the sewers. I feel about as good as his face looked after I punched it in.


Why do elves keep following me around. Ferari is nice enough I guess. Little weird though.


Day 3

Totally punched a ghost to death. Ferari has taken to calling us Destiny Friends. I’ll never admit it but I like the sound of it.


Day 4

Starflower has been unconscious for a few days now and her condition is getting worse. The cleric treating her says we need a damn miracle to break whatever curse is on her (side note – Jed probably had a hand in this and I’m gonna cave his face in next time I see him)

We’re out in the woods on a unicorn hunt now. Everyone’s talking about how they’re good creatures and pure and all that junk. Sounds like the kinda critter that would never waste it’s time on someone like me. But we’re here to help starflower and maybe that’s noble enough intentions to get it to show up.

We’ll see


Oh wow I can post!
Ferari posts his 'so far'

I learned that rat-men exist! Also that I never want to go into the sewers again!
I hope my third destiny friend will be alright.
I NEED to stop suggesting rope be tied to my being, especially around ghosts! (I never had to fight a ghost before but that was…a poor experience, the sewers were only better because my face didn’t get smashed up like rotten fruit). My WHOLE face was swollen, maybe I can find someone to help with this.
THIS MORNING: Bug came to my room, he said a CHICKEN came out of the pot he found in the haunted house, and then we checked the bag I found at the house, and it. is. ENDLESS! I bet it could hold pounds of stuff…maybe millions of pounds! This is one of the most wonderful things I could possibly posses, it’s so amazing! I never knew something like this could exist!!
Things may die in this bag…
Chickens make Rhogar happy! (Which is odd, but most things seem to annoy or exasperate him so if something makes my destiny friend happy, I will try to not look at it as a simple food-bird).

Dragonborns can change their colour!! I never knew that! But just today Rhogar went from bronze to GOLD. That’s TWO different colours and he was so casual about it, like it was no big deal! He’s shifty sometimes but he’s a cool guy, his inspiring words fill me with strength, just knowing they’re coming from someone likely filled with marvel and magic.
Starflower is cursed! We need to find a unicorn horn to help her! I KNEW we were destiny friends, you don’t just feel compelled to help a stranger by going on a quest for a UNICORN when it’s NOT destiny. (I STILL cannot believe Bug and Rhogar have only known each other a few days longer than I have them, Starflower too! I have a feeling our destiny is gonna turn out some amazing adventures).

I felt concerned about finding a unicorn but a young Royal Thorn, (who is amazingly precious)! felt the dire need we had to find a unicorn, which he has SEEN, (How amazing is that??), lucky for us the other Thorns don’t believe him, so they won’t stop us finding it.

Rhogar, Bug, and I are going to come up with a plan for capturing this unicorn, hopefully we won’t have to kill it to get it’s pure magic to help Starflower, because…I don’t think I could kill a unicorn, WHO WOULD WANT TO?! They’re…they’re probably the most beautiful things, I bet they’re smart and kind and good. I hope it can help us…
I hope we can find it.

The Haunted Mansion
Session 4

It’s a new day and our heroes awake in their respective rooms at the Bright Maiden Inn, but not all feel refreshed from a night’s rest. Bug wakes feeling incredibly nauseous from their adventures in the sewers the previous day and is exhausted from spending the night tossing and turning in agony. However in the middle of the night his precious pet mouse, Pickles, has returned to him with a note from his master that briefly states that she feels she’s seen the strange symbol Bug described to her but she can’t place it. She says she’s headed to Valta to gather more information and that she will get back in contact with him when she has more to tell him. The note is dated two days prior.

Rhogar, in a bout of kindness toward the half-orc, heads downstairs to grab a pitcher of water from Mary to give to Bug to hopefully help the stomachache. Ferari, sitting in the main dining area, is very happy to see him and cuts off Rhogar from his escape route back upstairs (causing him to slosh half of the water onto himself in the process) asking how Bug is doing. Rhogar starts to tell Ferari that Bug is very much under the weather when a loud groaning is heard upstairs. Ferari, being the kindhearted soul he is, runs up and loudly knocks on the door to Bug and Rhogar’s room…. to which Bug is not appreciative.

He comes out of the room and Bug looks horrible, dark circles under his eyes and pale from exhaustion. He turns down the water Rhogar offers and Ferari insists that they see someone to heal Bug. Since they want to check on Starflower’s progress anyway, they decide to head towards the temple of Pelor, Rhogar taking the pitcher of water with him despite Mary’s very meager attempts to stop him.

They enter the temple to be greeted by one of the acolytes, who recognizes them and allows them to see Starflower. She’s still unconscious, but she seems to have regained a lot of color and appears more like she’s in a deep sleep than dying. In a sick bed next to her is Kristi, the head cleric, apparently exhausted by her attempts to revive the elf. Rhogar “accidentally” nudges her in her sleep and the acolyte that allowed them entry chastises him for his rudeness.

Seeing that there’s nothing they can do at the moment for Starflower, Ferari asks the acolyte to look at Bug. They tell her about having been in the sewers the entire day prior and she is appalled at this information. She does a cursory physical on Bug and heals him of his nausea though he’s still tired from lack of sleep.

After healing, Bug and Rhogar discuss what to do about Starflower. Bug brings up the point that after what happened in Padstow, he feels that they shouldn’t just abandon her here in Riket, that they can find a way to Valta sometime in the future once Starflower is feeling better. Rhogar agrees and Ferari is incredibly moved by this show of affection on Rhogar’s part. Their bond of friendship reinforced, Ferari exclaims they should seek out adventure, free of the sewers and in the clean air of the outdoors as a way of further strengthening the kinship between them.

Ferari’s first order of business is to try and find a stall where he can get his face painted, Bug’s is to keep a close eye on the half-elf to make sure he doesn’t get lost and Rhogar is along for the ride and eager to watch this train wreck of a man wander the city. After some searching in market square, Ferari is disappointed that all that seems to be available is a booth that does face paintings for children. Rhogar offers to pay for Ferari to get his face done, but Ferari is incredibly insulted on the inside and exasperatedly demands they just find a help wanted board to seek the adventure he craves.

They find what they’re looking for and begin searching the flyers posted on it for anything interesting. Bug finds a few flyers about a gardening club and takes one for himself for his retirement dreams. Ferari, after some digging, finds a listing for a house that’s up for sale in the richer district of the city— but what catches his eye is that on the listing is scrawled (in several different hands) the words “HAUNTED”, “CURSED” and “MURDER HOUSE”. Seeing this is just the thing that “Team Destiny” (as he has dubbed them) is looking for, he leads them to the site of the listing.

When they arrive, they see there’s a small gathering of people near the front gates and two guards are trying to break up the crowd by loudly telling them to go back to their business and that there’s nothing for them to see. The group approaches two older women who were quietly gossiping to ask what they knew about the house. The women eagerly relay what they know to the group, saying that they had heard shrieking from the house on many nights and they’d seen objects being expelled from the windows. They inform the group that at least four people have gone missing or have died in the cursed house and they’re confident it’s haunted.

With this information, Ferari approaches the guards and attempts to persuade them to tell them more about what’s happening, saying they are interested in buying the property but they want to know more about it first. The guards, persuaded by Ferari’s charms, quietly tell them that the body count is much higher than the public is aware of and that they can’t get into the house to recover most of the bodies, only being able to grab those that are found near the entrance or that are expelled from the windows. They also tell them that the captain of the guard is offering a reward on the down-low to anyone who can help solve the investigation.

Bug and Ferari decide they need to speak to the Captain and Rhogar tells them he’s going to hang back and check for clues outside the house as best he can. Bug and Ferari are suspicious that Rhogar may try to ditch them, but with some inspirational (yet vaguely threatening) words from Ferari, they decide to leave him to his searching while they ask the Captain for information. As soon as the two of them are out of sight, Rhogar sits down a bench nearby and contents himself by sipping from the pitcher of water he’s still carrying.

The other two adventurers arrive at the guard house and after speaking with an elf behind a desk, they are ushered into a side room by a human woman with dark brown hair pulled into a tight bun behind her head, scars on the left side of her face and the emblem of Riket holding a dark blue cape on her shoulders. Bug recognizes her as Captain Vermillia, who’s in charge of the guard in Riket.

They explain that they are here to help the guard solve the problem of the house and that they were told of a reward by the guards there. Captain Vermillia is clearly upset about her guards telling civilians about the reward but she sighs and says that she’s out of options anyway so she might as well allow them to help. She tells them that more bodies have been lost to the house than publicly disclosed and that ever since the owners of the house, the Del Marrows, disappeared along with the servants, no one has entered the building and lived.

Ferari loudly exclaims to the Captain that they are clearly the group for the job at hand, persuading her quite easily to hand over the key to the house. She wishes them well on their job, though she’s clearly worried that they aren’t prepared for the task. The two leave, key in hand, to meet back with their dragonborn friend at the abandoned manor.

They find Rhogar rummaging through the bushes near the mansion, intently looking for clues (though in reality he’s pretending to be hard at work). Together again, the party approaches the front doors and unlock them, stepping inside.

The foyer they enter is dimly lit, the front windows having been boarded up after being broken, columns support a balcony that wraps around the foyer on the second floor. Broken furniture and objects are strewn about the bloodstained floor and their footsteps echo as they walk in.

In a sudden stroke of uneasiness, Ferari suggests to the rest of the party that they tie themselves together in a line with the rope they have on hand with ten feet of rope between each of them in case someone is attacked by the supposed spirit. Bug and Rhogar are hesitant to commit to a line formation and instead hold their parts of the rope, Ferari tying the first section around his waist. Tied together, Ferari begins to lead them on a room-by-room inspection of the manor.

Each of the rooms they enter is similar to the foyer— all of the windows are smashed, the furniture thrown and broken and dust over everything. They enter a dining room, destroyed, then the hallway on the west side of the manor, wrecked with its paintings slashed by what appears to have been large claws.

Rhogar tries to open a set of double doors in the dining hall and they appear to be locked, so he gets out his crowbar to attempt to force open the doors but Ferari sees this and convinces him that maybe it’s not the best idea to be making a lot of noise. The party instead continues to search rooms along the west side of the house, finding a destroyed storage closet and a wrecked sitting room that has a locked door to the north. Ferari figures the door might lead to a room connected to the other locked doors and asks the party if they would like to explore the rest of the house first or try and open the locked doors. Bug and Rhogar agree that they should try and unlock the door and Ferari begins to pick the lock.

It’s unlocked quickly and opens up to a dimly-lit library, though what’s odd about this room is that while the rest of the house is in shambles, most of the room is intact. Bookcases line the walls, though one of them is knocked over with its contents spilled out across the floor and most of the furniture is also broken and strewn about the room. Upon closer inspection, the upright bookcases are filled with books about history, fantasy, tales of high adventure and other such novels. The books from the overturned bookcase appear to be romance novels. They go to step into the room and hear the faint sound of wood scooting across wood… the party is startled but press on with their inspection.

As they look at the books on the shelves, Ferari notices that one of the books appears to be fake and made of wood. As he lifts it from the shelf, it pivots and the sound of grinding stone is heard in the upper-right corner of the room and a hidden door is revealed in the stone floor with a spiral staircase that leads downward. Suddenly, Ferari sees movement out of the corner of his eye— one of the broken chairs begins to move across the floor of its own accord. As he calls out to his friends to warn them, the chair lifts off the ground and hurtles toward him. Out of sheer luck, all three party members manage to duck out of the way as the chair sails overhead, smashing into the wall behind them.

Objects begins to levitate and the party readies themselves to combat a seemingly invisible foe, Rhogar throwing his crowbar at the nearest object, missing it, and it clatters to the ground. He goes to retrieve it and the object he was aiming for flies toward him and misses. Bug drops the rope tied to Ferari so that he is more agile in case of further attacks and Ferari moves forward to see if he can discern anything causing the levitating items. AS he does, a wave of force slams into him and throws him over Rhogar and against the back wall of the room.

The party continues to combat the invisible enemy but can’t seem to find a source to direct their attacks, being hit by floating objects (like a metal-bound, heavy collector’s autographed collection of romance novels that careens into Ferari’s forehead) and slammed into walls by a massive wave of force time and time again.

Rhogar manages to peek down the spiral staircase and sees that it opens into another room, but as he looks down, Ferari is thrown back against the back wall again with such force (smacking his own face with a chair leg he had armed himself with) that it pulls Rhogar backwards as he is still holding the rope that’s tied around Ferari. The party is then pelted with romance novels, Rhogar and Bug dodge and deflect theirs but Ferari takes a direct hit. Rhogar decides he’s had enough and he uses his crowbar to exit the locked double doors and head into the dining room.

Rhogar and Ferari cross the ruined dining hall, Ferari stopping halfway to inspect his surroundings, and Rhogar enters the door on the far side, revealing a destroyed kitchen. Seeing the cooking ingredients scattered about the floor, it gives him an idea and he shovels some flour into the empty pitcher he took with him from the inn.

While the two of them are out of the room, Bug suddenly feels spectral claws slam into him, a very different sensation to the walls of forces that had been attacking him earlier. Bug punches the air to retaliate and feels himself make contact with some sort of invisible form, that yells “GETOUT!!” at him in a thin, male voice. Bug shouts that he’s managed to hit the creature to the rest of his party and rushes out the open door to the dining hall, shouting “Why don’t you get out of my face?!” to the invisible form.

Hearing Bug yell this and seeing the damage Bug took from the claws, Ferari heads back into the room to engage it in combat (he briefly considers trying to douse the invisible creature in oil and lighting it on fire, but then reconsiders as he would be doing this in a room full of very flammable, old books), Rhogar dropping the rope to allow him to do so. He re-enters the library and closes the door behind him, leaving him alone with the invisible creature. He slashes out with his rapier, hoping to make contact with it, and actually manages to run his weapon through it.

Rhogar exits the kitchen, passing the pitcher of flour to Bug, who carries it to the library. Bug and Ferari, joined shortly by Rhogar, then begin to toss flour in all directions, hoping to reveal the creature. They coat the surrounding area and it seems to be safe, so Bug and Ferari descend the staircase, leaving Rhogar alone and clutching the pitcher of flour yet again.

Alone in the room, he looks down and notices the flour getting disturbed slightly in front of him and casts thunderwave as a reaction to the movement, the force of thunderous sound slamming into the invisible entity. Rhogar throws flour in the direction of the creature, managing to reveal its hands, allowing a nice visible target for him to spit acid on. The creature shrieks in pain as Rhogar runs down the stairs, yelling that he found it to the rest of his party.

Bug goes up the stairs to peek into the library and see if he can see the creature, but Rhogar’s acid unfortunately washed off what flour was on it and so the room appears empty once again. Meanwhile Ferari attempts to unlock the mysterious door in the basement, but as he sticks his lockpicks into the lock he feels the metal begin to heat up. Luckily, he lets go just in time as the metal of his picks melts— revealing the door to be trapped.

It’s about that time that Ferari feels a sharp tug around his waist and he realizes very quickly that the rope that he left tied to his body is partially upstairs with the monster that uses telekinesis to throw objects at high velocity. He’s pulled off his feet and up the spiral staircase, Bug nimbly jumping over him as he tumbles, bloody and beaten, back into the library.

Rhogar regards the incident with mild interest and decides he’s going to attempt to use his crowbar to force the trapped door open, but he can’t seem to get enough strength mustered to open it. Ferari gets up and hands the end of his rope to Bug and tries to run around the room with the rope to catch the creature in it. The attempt is, predictably, unsuccessful but Ferari does manage to feel where the creature is and the party throws flour on it to reveal its visage… right before Bug punches it to re-death and dissipates its form into a fine mist.

The party catches its breath and decides they are going to open the mysterious door in the basement. Using a crowbar they manage to bypass the trap and they enter the room beyond. The door opens to reveal a single chamber with large paintings and tapestries hanging on the walls depicting heroic images of people slaying dragons and other fantastic beasts. Also in the room are four pedestals with items under a crystal case and a larger display table at the far end of the room with more items under crystal and a nice rude in front of it.

They each begin to inspect the items on the pedestals, the first contains a jar with some creature’s dead eye floating in a preserving liquid, one has four semi-precious gemstones set on a pillow, one has a rusted dagger with the words “To Del Marrow, Our Hero” inscribed in draconic on its blade and the last has more creature parts suspended in another jar. The party decides to break open the crystal case containing the gems and they each take one, saving a gem for Starflower.

Upon realizing the larger case is the only thing left to inspect, both Rhogar and Ferari go to see what’s under the crystal. Ferari approaches first, but before he can get a good look inside the case, the rug under his feet suddenly comes to life and begins to wrap around his body, covering it entirely and beginning to smother him. Seeing this, Bug runs to his aid and manages to rip the rug off… before it immediately wraps back around Ferari.

While being squeezed, Ferari is able to get his rapier out and make a small hole in the rug and seeing this, Rhogar attempts to stick a dagger in the spot along the blade of the rapier where the hole was made. He succeeds and cuts a hand-sized hole in the rug, allowing Ferari a bit of breathing room. Bug once again rips the rug off of Ferari, freeing him and it then decides it will target the dragonborn and tightly wraps around Rhogar.

Seeing his friend trapped, a sudden wave of inspiration hits Ferari. He remembers the discussion he had with Bug and Rhogar the day before about Rhogar being a dragon and makes the logical conclusion that all dragons are immune to fire (for any readers who thinks this is the case, it most certainly isn’t.). Ferari pulls out a flask of oil and attempts to hurl it at the rug to douse it in preparation for ignition, but the lack of oxygen to his brain from nearly being suffocated has him so dizzy that he spills the entire flask on himself on accident.

Trapped in the carpet, Rhogar realizes there’s really only one course of action that makes sense and he spits acid, burning a hole large enough for his snout to poke through and allow him air. It’s at this moment that Bug’s fist connects with the carpet, Bug hoping that the rug is thick enough to absorb the damage being dealt to Rhogar but being very wrong in that assumption and the wind is knocked out of him. Bug apologizes and Rhogar flips him a bird through the rug.

Feari sees Bug attack the carpet and decides to abandon his fire plans and follow suit— he pulls out his rapier and attempts to stab a part of the carpet not occupied by Rhogar. In his attempt, he stabs Rhogar directly into his shin and Bug and Ferari see blood begin to well up on the outside from the wound. Rhogar flips Rhogar a second bird and tries to cut himself out from inside the carpet but the blade of his dagger just scrapes uselessly from inside.

Bug, yet again, manages to yank the carpet off of his teammates and the carpet goes to grab him but Bug snaps the rug out and away from his body, rendering its attacks useless. With the carpet now off of Rhogar, the party deals a hefty amount of damage in a short amount of time, Bug finishing off the rug with a shot of fire from his fists after Ferari douses it in oil.

Free of the creature, Rhogar notices Ferari covered in oil and makes the logical leap to deduce what his plans were going to be while he was trapped in the rug and begins to give him a very loud lesson on copper dragonborn resistances and weaknesses. Ferari commits the lesson to memory and the crew inspects the table.

Under the glass is a very finely-made set of leather armor, a worn leather satchel and a cooking pot, its outside enameled with the image of farmland and chickens painted on its side. Bug breaks the crystal case and they divide the spoils inside: Ferari takes the satchel, Rhogar takes the armor and Bug takes the pot. Seeing nothing else in the room, the party explores the rest of the manor.

They head to unexplored east wing of the first floor and find several long-dead bodies in the servants’ quarters under a bunch of broken furniture. They head upstairs and find a set of rooms filled with taxidermied animals and artwork, all untouched like the basement and most of the bookcases. They find another body on the second floor in the guest chambers, this one belonging to a member of the Splitcloaks, apparently killed by the poltergeist while attempting to loot the house. Rhogar takes the emblem off their body and they head into the master bedroom.

Inside they find the room destroyed like most of the other rooms in the house and they also find two skeletons near each other, one holding a dagger. Inspecting the room, they find a leather journal that belonged to Roberto Del Marrow and Rhogar reads it aloud to his companions. The entries start several years back and talk about how elated he is to obtain the various artifacts that are in his trophy rooms, but as the years progress the entries get more and more irritated in tone, Del Marrow frustrated at his wife who doesn’t appear to share his hobby. It ends abruptly, as if the owner had planned to continue writing in it but never got the chance.

The party looks around the manor a bit longer, Bug grabbing the thick book that gave Ferari some trouble earlier (a hardcover, metal-enameled collector’s edition autographed compendium of trashy romance literature) to give to his master and Ferari spouting theories as to why the ghost even attacked them in the first place, but it seems the mystery is not to be solved by them.

Confused, the party decides it’s time to head back to the captain and let her know what they’ve found…

Session 3

Dusk finds Rhogar, Bug and the unconscious form of Starflower riding in the back of the farmer, Samuel’s, wagon as it approaches the southern gates of Riket. The guards open them to allow the travelers passage and the farmer delivers the group to the temple of Pelor, according to Bug’s discretion. The two bring Starflower’s body into the sanctuary of the temple and several acolytes rush to get the head cleric upon seeing Starflower in her current state.

Moments later, the party is greeted by Kristi, an elven woman with long blonde hair and wearing a gold symbol of Pelor over her cleric’s robes. She tries to revive Starflower, but to no avail and clearly to her frustration. She asks the party what has happened and Rhogar hands her the sealed letter that Sampson sent them to Riket with. Upon reading the letter, Kristi realizes that Starflower’s condition may be more severe than originally thought and she begins a ritual to hopefully restore her to wakefulness. Since there is nothing Rhogar and Bug can do but wait, they head for The Bright Maiden, a tavern on the eastern side of the city near the docks and temple of Kord.

They enter the excessively noisy and far, FAR too busy tavern and manage to rent a room for the night (tipping Mary, the woman who served them, very well). Despite the noise booming from the temple next door, the two adventurers sleep well through the night.

Bug is the first to wake in the morning, coming downstairs to meet a very unpersonable woman behind the bar. He takes breakfast, asking teh woman to let Rhogar know where he was going, and heads out to market to see about maybe buying a few potions for the road ahead while Rhogar stays behind and sleeps in. Bug enters the market district just as many of the stalls are setting up to open and his awareness manages to keep him from nearly walking head-on into a rather beautiful half-elf man.

Apologizing profusely, the man introduces himself as Ferari and immediately feels kinship with Bug, though the feeling was not entirely mutual. Upon finding out Bug is looking for a stall that sells potions, Ferari offers to help him and leads the way… only to get the two hopelessly lost seeing as he had just gotten to Riket himself. Luckily Bug grew up in Riket and navigated them back to the marketplace, quickly spotting a now-assembled stall that displayed exactly what they were looking for.

It’s a simple stall with an emblem of a bottle bubbling over above the table, run by a half-elf woman named Alora. The two introduce themselves to her, and ask about the price of her wares. Realizing the potions might be slightly out of their range, Ferari began to woo the woman and managed to strike a nice bargain on the sale. During their discussion, they learned that Alora also dabbles in her own personal potion experiments, though she was reticent to sell any of her experimental brews for fear of possibly hurting one of them. Ferari promised to return someday for a potion of her own creation, should any turn out to be beneficial.

Ferari, being new, asks Bug if he knew of anywhere to stay in Riket and Bug offers to show him the inn where he and Rhogar are staying. The two head to the Bright Maiden and are greeted by the sight of the rather bleary-eyed barkeeper from last night, the woman from the morning now doing her best to not do anything as much as possible. As Ferari rents a room, Bug learns that Rhogar left some time after Bug, but was headed for the docks. Finding that odd, Bug sets off for the east side of the city, Ferari in tow (much to Bug’s chagrin).

While Bug and Ferari had been shopping, Rhogar headed off to the docks to see if he could procure transit to Valta by asking random passers-by and sailors where they were headed. Not having much luck, he ends his short excursion on a bench facing the ocean and questioning the meaning of life for a time. He is snapped out of his reverie by a big, meaty hand clapping on his shoulder and he throws a punch reflexively at the figure’s stomach. Bug ends up taking the full brunt of the blow, though it doesn’t appear to do any actual damage.

Rhogar is introduced to Ferari, who immediately is overly friendly and affable towards Rhogar. Rhogar questions how Bug seems to attract super-outgoing elf folk and Bug is just as miffed as Rhogar. It’s then that the party overhears two men arguing loudly on the pier near them. One man loudly exclaims “I swear! It’s RATS! I saw them coming off the ship, they’re so shifty, you’ve seen them!!” while the other man interrupts with “How can rats do that?? It’s not possible! It’s not rats!”

Being curious, the party asks the men what they are arguing about. It seems their ship’s cargo was stolen in the middle of the night, the ropes lashing it to the deck all severed. The man who argues it was rats is confident in his assumptions, while the other continues to deny the possibility. They do agree that regardless of what did it, the ship can’t set sail for Valta until they either get the cargo back or they get replacement cargo. The party (mostly spearheaded by Ferari) volunteer to take up the investigation and see if they can’t find the cargo for the crew. The men allow them access to the ship, though they are both skeptical about their success.

Once on the ship, the investigation begins, though Rhogar tries more to stow away in the ship’s hold than actually look for clues. The ships is unfortunately too busy with crewmates trying to restock and re-rope the vessel and Rhogar concedes defeat to his plan. Ferari notices scuff marks where it looks like the heavy crates were dragged off the deck and Bug, looking over the side of the ship, notices a rat run by, down the anchor chain, to the street and down a manhole. And then another rat do the same. And another. He points out the phenomenon to the others, who follow the rats to the manhole. The cover proves to be a formidable opponent and it takes the efforts of all three adventurers, but it is eventually pried off and Ferari descends first, disappearing into the shadows (Rhogar entertains the thought of ditching Ferari to Bug but is vetoed in the decision).

They have now entered the sewers and the tunnel gets darker and darker as they travel along, Bug and Ferari seemingly unaffected but Rhogar having a hard time seeing. the group walks on a stone path to one side of a channel of filthy water that flows toward the darkness, rats swimming along its surface or running along the other side of the channel.

After several minutes, the path opens up into a large circular room with a large hole in the center. The room has seven other tunnels like the one they traveled through attached to it and the channels of dirty water flow over the edge of the hole and disappear from sight (but not from sound). The rats also appear to be following the water, as they swim along the channel and then vanish underneath the surface. Seeing this, Ferari attempts to grab a rat but is bit instead.

Realizing the path they need to follow more than likely continues at the bottom of the hole in front of them, Ferari and Bug tie a length of rope around the stone walkway that goes over the channel and drop the other end into the hole. Rhogar lights up the crystal he took from the mysterious shrine (he lights it an appropriate shade of brown) and they watch as Ferari descends first. Rhogar, again, poses the idea that he and Bug should ditch the half-elf, but Bug’s reply is to make Rhogar go down before him on the rope.

Ferari treads the nasty water, inspecting a large grate on the opposite wall as the other two descend the rope. Rhogar manages to make it to the end of the rope, dropping the final 20 feet into the deep water below without much issue. Bug on the other hand, loses his grip and he plummets into the water, splashing the other two with a nauseating wave of refuse and leaving the rope well out of their reach.

As Bug’s weight is added to the cistern’s water, Ferari notices that the water is now above a very distinct water line but before they have time to contemplate the meaning of his findings, there is a loud rumbling as the bars of the grate descend, pulling the party down a long and disgusting chute.

They pick up speed as they travel further and further down, Ferari deciding to pull in his limbs and make himself more hydrodynamic for the plunge as Rhogar and Bug attempt to slow their travel by any means necessary with varying degrees of success. Ferari’s legs collide with a second grate at the bottom of the chute with a bone-vibrating impact, the other two hitting the same obstacle with much less force. Upon inspection it appears there is a bar missing from the grate and the three squeeze through, Rhogar cursing the day that the other two were born.

The party enters a large chamber with another dark cistern in the middle, though the edges are crumbling away in disrepair as the water they just rode in pours over its edge. Ferari sneaks ahead of Bug and Rhogar, rapier drawn and darting between crates and barrels scattered about the room, to see a male humanoid figure and three giant rats across the chasm in the floor. Upon realizing they have seen him, Ferari attempts to parlay with the filthy man who stands hunched over, almost beastlike, before them.

The talk does not go well, the man appears to have not been a part of society in quite a while, exclaiming he was cast out, though for reasons unknown. Ferari attempts to persuade him to try returning to the surface but the man only hisses his defiance and backs up, pulling out a metal panflute from his dirtied rags that hang around his form. Bug, who was slowly and quietly making his way closer, sees this and sends a shower of sparks at the man, initiating combat.

The man commands the giant rats to attack the half-orc and half-elf as Rhogar surveys the fight and offers words of inspiration to hsi party (is he looking for an opportunity to attack or debating whether to join the fray? …It’s the latter). Taking the opportunity afforded by the confusion of the rat attack, the man plays his panflute, summoning a swarm of rats from a wall near Rhogar. Seeing the swarm, Rhogar unleashes a thunderwave, effectively turning the rats into a series of small pancakes.

The man summons another swarm of rats, which rushes to engulf Ferari, biting and scratching at his armor and as the man plays the pipes his skin throbs and he cries out in pain. Ferari takes the moment of distraction to attack him with his rapier, though the blade seems to have difficulties sinking into the man’s form… which then bursts, the man’s face growing longer and diseased fur sprouting from his body as he scrambles to get away from his assailants.

Rhogar makes quick work of the giant rats as Bug unleashes a gout of fire at the now half-rat-half-man creature. It screams out in pain, drawing a blade and rushing Bug. The blade misses but Bug was not expecting the creature to then sink its yellowed teeth into his neck, sending a sickening pulse of pain into his system. In retaliation, he punches the rat-man, causing its face to cave in and the life to leave it forever.

As Ferari dispatches of the rats that cover him, Rhogar heals Bug who looks much worse than he should for what damage he took. Bug insists it’s from the sewer itself but Rhogar seems skeptical. Once Ferari is clear of rats, he pockets the panflute the rat-man was using and the party takes a closer look at the crates and barrels, Rhogar quickly recognizing that the name printed on them, The Lady Luck, belongs to the ship whose cargo was stolen.

Realizing their only way forward is down into the cistern, the party ties a rope to one of the barrels, Bug holding the rope to assist Ferari in his descent… which isn’t needed as Ferari slips on some algae and falls down into the water below. When he resurfaces, he sees daylight to one side of a long tunnel the water connects to and yells to the group that he believes he found a way out. Hearing this, Bug takes the rope to descend only to also slip and fall into the water below. Rhogar calmly gathers the rope and swan dives downward with very little issue.

They swim down the tunnel exiting from a cave on a rocky beach with a cliff wall nearby. The group, with the aid of the rope and some pitons, manage to climb up and see they’re only maybe a mile or so from the city of Riket. Water-laden, boots soggy, they make their way to the North Gate, where Bug’s citizenship gets them back inside with no issues. They make their way back to the Bright Maiden to wash (tipping Mary handsomly once again for all her hard work).

Refreshed, the party heads back to the docks to let the sailors know what they found, though without the actual cargo in tow, the sailors can only offer free transport to Valta if the party promises to work while they are on the ship. It will also still take them a day to re-gather their supplies as someone must now go and retrieve the cargo. Hearing this, Bug and Rhogar decide it might be good to see how Starflower is faring.

At the temple of Pelor, Kristi appears to be attempting a ritual of some kind. Starflower is on one of the sick beds, surrounded by acolytes and herbs and candles, while Kristi mutters incantations under her breath, sweat on her forehead. They are soon shooed from the temple as their conversations are distracting and it might cause Cleric Kristi to lose focus. They retire to their rooms for the night, Rhogar playing a sad song on his flute and Bug waiting for his beloved pet mouse to hurry back with a reply from his master…

Session 2

Bug and Rhogar wake after a peaceful sleep to discover that Starflower is no longer sharing their room and her belongings have been taken. Not seeing any sign of a struggle or violent entry other than their door being unlocked, Bug and Rhogar decide that Starflower must have left to carry on her own journey and plans.

They gather their belongings and head downstairs to be greeted by complimentary breakfast and the bartender of the inn sweeping the floors. Seeing them arrive, he tells them that he saw Starflower leave several hours ago, though it only moderately raised the party of two’s suspicions as to what Starflower was doing.

The Bartender then brings up the question of whether the party had seen Jed, as he had not returned to the village. Bug and Rhogar attempted to conceal the whole truth from him, but the bartender’s keen insight eventually coerced them into revealing they had attacked Jed due to suspicions of duplicitous activities, showing Bug’s crude drawing of the shrine as proof. The bartender, seeing that they spoke in earnest but not fully trusting them (as they are strangers to the village), asked them to accompany him to the church of Pelor to speak with its cleric, to test the truth of what they say and see what action they should take.

It’s at the church that they meet Sampson, the older human cleric that runs the services. Sampson asks Douglas, revealing that to be the bartender’s name, why he’s creating such a commotion and Douglas asks the party to explain what they found. They show Sampson the drawing, though it’s not until they mention they were attacked by animated skeletons that Sampson and Douglas show any sign of immediate fear. Sampson arms himself with a cudgel and demands the party take him to where they saw the shrine so he can inspect it, and Douglas decides this is getting a little dangerous and he’d rather not be a direct part of it, heading back to his tavern.

Rhogar successfully leads the group back to where they slew the half-ogre, noticing some fresh footprints on the ground as they make their way there. Not inspecting further, he leads Sampson through the false wall and down to the tunnels. Rhogar also managed to detect a trap the party never disabled and steered them clear of the trapped tile, marking it with a bit of ink from Bug’s supply.

Upon entering the chamber containing the shrine, Sampson inspects it, casting a divine spell while doing so. The spell takes effect and Sampson recoils from the aura of the shrine, visibly shaken by what he sensed. He asks Rhogar and Bug to lead him to the altar room they described.

As they enter the large altar chamber, they notice the stone basin Rhogar knocked over is set back on the table and filled with blood again, and a familiar body lays prone before the base. On either side of the body stands an animated corpse, both appearing to have been freshly-killed, one from blunt force trauma to the head and the other via a large cut across the neck. As the group enters, the corpses attack.

The sight of necromancy being used shakes Sampson to his core and he is unable to move or attack at first, leaving Bug and Rhogar to fend off the creatures by themselves. Rhogar incapacitates the open-throated zombie by casting Tasha’s hideous laughter as Bug deals a series of blows to the corpse nearest him. Seeing these two now engaging the undead beings, Sampson jumps in and attacks the monsters with his cudgel.

Bug defeats one of the zombies by tearing out its innards via a punch through the gut and then checks Starflower’s condition. She appears to have large cuts on her arms and is very pale, her breath shallow. Sampson attempts to turn the remaining zombie using his divine connection to Pelor, but it’s not enough as the creature continues its attack. Finally, through the combined efforts of the party, Bug deals the killing blow and the zombie is felled.

Rhogar attempts to wake Starflower by casting cure wounds. Color returns to her face and her breathing is steadied, but she does not wake, baffling both Rhogar and the cleric. Sampson, being a trained healer, casts several spells though none change Starflower’s current state of unconsciousness. Sampson, shaken and disheartened by his ineffectiveness to these people, suggests they take her back to the village and Bug carries her back to the temple with Sampson and Rhogar leading.

At the temple, Sampson asks the two to seek out a guard as the events that transpired do not bode well for the safety of their village. Rhogar stays behind with Sampson as Bug leaves to seek the guard out. While Rhogar is with Sampson he asks him to look at the papers he found in the desk, but Sampson is unable to read or decipher them.

Bug, realizing he doesn’t know where to seek the guards, heads for the Three Cats Inn, and enlists Douglas to help him find who he needs. Douglas, suspicious in seeing just Bug without Sampson or Rhogar, agrees to come with him, though he does so armed with his crossbow. He leads Bug to a guardhouse and they lead a guard back to the temple.

The guard seems miffed about being disturbed, since he is a small town guard that doesn’t see a lot of action, but Sampson explains in hushed tones what happened to the party underground, immediately putting the guard on alert. He requests the guard leave at once to get aid for the village from Riket as soon as he can. The guard rushes out to do so.

The group then discusses their next course of action; it seems as if Starflower will need aid from a more powerful being than Sampson, who feels upset that he cannot help more. Douglas offers the party a ride with a friend of his who is riding out of town toward Riket with a cart of supplies in the morning. Rhogar and Bug accept the offer and they leave Starflower at the temple, depositing the coppers they found on the zombies into the alms box of the temple of Pelor on their way out.

Since the wagon will not be leaving until morning, Rhogar takes the opportunity to purchase a new dagger from a local blacksmith, and Bug meditates back at the Inn. They join patrons at the bar for dinner, provided by Douglas, and attempt to strike up a conversation with the man, though it goes rather awkwardly as Bug admonishes Rhogar for trying to ask about Douglas’ wooden leg and they can’t seem to get Douglas to open up at all. Topics of conversation range from how he knew Jed to what Kaia looked like and where Douglas thinks she might be. He says he’s unsure, but she might have run away from home as relations were stressed between her and her father and it had been some time since he had seen Kaia up close. The last time he interacted with her was a little over a month back, though he recalls seeing her in passing more recently than that.

They spend the night at the inn and wake to join Douglas’ friend, Samuel for their journey. They get in to the back of the wagon, stocked with supplies and Starflower’s unconscious form, and head off toward Riket. Along the way, they strike up another slightly awkward conversation with the farmer, asking him if he had seen a tiefling wander through town recently. Samuel recalled seeing a tiefling and a gnome or hafling travelling the roads outside of town about seven months back, but didn’t know what their business was.

As they travel, they are stopped by two men wearing armor with the symbol of the Riket guard on it, stating that they are collecting a highway tax from all travellers on the main road. Samuel, having traveled this way many a time, is immediately suspicious and declares there’s never been a tax before and says he’s not paying a highway tax. Bug is also suspicious, knowing the guard, and notices that the “guards” aren’t wearing the right style of helmet per their uniform. Getting out of the wagon, he also notices someone concealed behind a tree in front of them. Pretending to be pulling out coin to pay the tax, Bug instead surprises the man closest to the wagon and places him in a headlock, initiating a fight between the now obviously fake guards and the party.

Rhogar and Bug quickly dispense of the three bandits, and a fourth reveals himself while taking a shot at Bug, who rushes him. Sensing the fight is about to go very poorly for him, the man blows loudly on a whistle he kept on his person, calling aid to whoever hears as Bug cuts him down, thought not killing him.

Answering the whistle, a man in studded leather armor appears, clapping and congratulating Rhogar and Bug on their quick work of his initiates. He smiles and asks that they all just go their separate ways, stating that they weren’t prepared to fight such a well-trained group but Bug and Rhogar really, REALLY shouldn’t continue the fight. The bandit at Bug’s mercy begs for his life in addition to what his apparent leader is asking. Rhogar questions why they should let them go and the leader states that he belongs to a group that would notice if he went missing. The two party members deliberate a bit on whether or not to comply and decide that everyone should probably die, Bug rushing the bandit leader and Rhogar performing a coup de grace on the incapacitated bandit.

Then began a rather harrowing fight between the three men, Bug sustaining a series of horrible wounds from a rather vicious attack, despite Rhogar managing to distract and lessen the likelihood of the leader to land any hits. Seeing Bug in bad shape, Rhogar rushes to the cart and pulls out a potion they believe to be a healing potion from Starflower’s bag. He administers the drink, thankfully healing Bug rather than poisoning him, allowing the two of them to force the bandit leader to drop his weapons and appear to surrender. He, again, begs for his life to be spared and to be let go.

Rhogar questions the man again as to why they should do that and asks him who he works for when the man states the same reason as before. The man pulls out an iron symbol, which Rhogar recognizes to be a symbol of the Splitcloaks and takes it from his grasp. As the party deliberates what to do with their captive, the bandit leader manages to sneak away, successfully stealthing from the party’s perception.

Rhogar and Bug clear the area and head back onto the wagon, letting Samuel know the coast was clear. The cart moves forward and the party makes it to the outskirts of Riket by dusk…

The Beginning
Session 1

Starflower, Bug and Rhogar start their adventure in Padstow, a quiet farming village in the western part of Alturnia. Starflower, with all of her worldly possessions (and some she acquired) she owns strapped to her back, she encounters Bug near the center of town and immediately strikes up a friendly conversation with the hungry, tired and very lost monk.

Despite his better judgement, Bug accompanies this strangle elf to the local tavern, known as the Three Cats Inn. Inside, they are greeted by the sight of wary townsfolk avoiding a heavily-drinking brass-scaled dragonborn who is sobbing at the bar and on his 5th drink.

Being the cheerful being she is, Starflower tries to strike up a conversation as the three of them purchase sustenance from the bartender. As they talk, a commotion is heard outside and a disheveled and very upset human man bursts into the bar and runs up to the bartender yelling that his daughter, Kaia, has been taken by a giant as he was working in a filed outside of town.

The bartender attempts to calm the agitated man, whose name is revealed to be Jed, but to no avail. Starflower, empathizing with the stranger, volunteers the help of herself, Bug and Rhogar. Bug is already headed for the door when he hears the man’s daughter was taken and Rhogar reluctantly finishes his drink and follows his new companions out to the field Jed leads them to.

Using their wits, they follow the trail the giant left through the forest to the north of the village and find the lair of the giant, which turns out to be a half-ogre, and not a true giant as described by Jed. While Rhogar and Starflower attempt to sneak into the cave, Bug instead chooses a more direct approach and insults the creature, who angrily attacks the monk.

As Bug battles the half-ogre, Starflower discovers a black-colored bird at the back of the cave eviscerated and its feathers scattered about the floor. Disturbed by the sight, she turns back to aid Bug in defeating the half-ogre. Rhogar sprays the creature with a gout of acid from his throat and defeats it by hitting it with the flat of his sword on its head.

Post-fight, the party gathers their thoughts, Bug gathers some hidden loot, and Starflower makes an astonishing discovery at the back of the cave where the bird’s corpse is— part of the wall is merely an illusion and the party descends past it, down a stone staircase and into a hallway made of carved, dark stone. The party chose to take a small rest and figure out what their plan of action regarding this new area would be— should they press on, or should they leave and search for the missing girl?

The party chose to continue and they began to explore the structure. They discover a locked door at the end of one hallway and Starflower narrowly missed being hit by a gout of flame from a trap hidden in the floor in another hallway. Sensing something of importance might be hidden in that direction, Rhogar disarmed the fire trap and the three adventurers made they way to a set of large, stone double doors flanked by large statues that had been defaced from the shoulders up. Starflower recognizes the statues to be religious in nature, but can’t determine the subject matter.

Entering the chamber, the party sees a dark stone altar with a stone basin filled with blood in front of them. Behind the altar are two more defaced statues similar to the ones outside the room. There are also six sarcophagi in the room, three on either side of the braziers lighting the chamber. One sarcophagus to the left of the altar and two to the right are closed, the rest are open and full of old cloth rags.

Starflower peers into the basin and sees that the surface gently ripples and there is a faint, red glow coming from under the blood. She fills her empty waterskin with blood, but it appears to not affect the effects on the basin.

As Starflower investigates further, Bug investigates the closed coffins finding three skeletons: a human skeleton that looks rather fresh and clean, a gnome or halfling skeleton with a shortsword and a tiefling skeleton with a staff. Bug takes the weapons from the skeletons and shows Starflower his new-gotten-gains. Meanwhile, Rhogar attempts to break the basin off of the altar and is successful with his crowbar, pushing the basin to the floor with a loud clatter and spilling its contents to the floor, revealing it to have held a blood-soaked amulet.

Rhogar washes off the amulet with water, and picks it up. It’s an amulet carved of faintly-glowing ruby of the top half of a skull with a silver crescent inlaid it the forehead and set with a dark metal chain. As Rhogar inspects the amulet, the skeletons in the sarcophagi come to life and attack the party, though weaponless thanks to Bug’s looting.

As they fight, Bug dispatches the gnome/halfling rather quickly, though he and Starflower take damage from the gnome/halfling and tiefling respectively, the tiefling giving Starflower a horrible gash across her face. Tangling with the human skeleton, Rhogar incapacitates the creature using Tasha’s hideous laughter. The skeleton, now on the ground and rocking in silent laughter, Rhogar dispatches it with his sword. He then turns and shames the tiefling skeleton to death with vicious mockery, with help from Bug’s blows to its head, and the skeletons were defeated.

The party decides to rest in the room, Rhogar offering the amulet for Starflower to identify. As she attunes herself to the object, the amulet grows cold and heavy in her grip, though she is unsure as to what it specifically does at the time. She decides to wear the amulet and they leave to investigate the locked door they encountered earlier.

Finding the door locked, Bug breaks the door down, revealing an alchemical workshop with a shrine in the corner and another locked door. Looting the room, Starflower takes alchemical tools from the table, an empty jar and three vials of liquid, one she believes to contain a healing potion, the other two containing a dark liquid. The party inspects the shrine, seeing a red-painted top half of a human skull with a dark crescent painted on the forehead, candles around the skull and an old curtain set as a backdrop. They consider taking the skull, but instinct and better judgement win and they leave it alone. Bug instead makes a crude drawing of the shrine and they force their way into the other locked door of the room.

They enter what appears to be a bedchamber that contains a desk, bookshelf and bed. Investigating the room, they find a chest containing 50 gold under the bed that they split evenly between the three of them, Starflower being diplomatic and taking the smaller share of the gold. Bug checks out the desk, taking the ink and quills he finds in one drawer and taking electrical damage from a trap on the second drawer. Rhogar is also electrocuted as he attempts to open the drawer. The two of them combine their efforts and manage to find a hidden mechanism that allows them to safely open the drawer, revealing papers and a journal written in a cipher in infernal. Rhogar decides to take the papers and journal.

The party then discusses their next plan of action as they realize several things:
1. They didn’t find the girl
2. They neglected to get Kaia’s description.

Knowing this, they decide to leave the hidden passageway and exit the cave, headed back toward town, feeling slightly defeated in their efforts to rescue her.

As they exit the cave, they are greeted by Jed, who is approaching the area. Jed is anxious to find out if they managed to find his daughter and when he finds the party was unsuccessful, he becomes very nervous. Seeing this, Bug and Rhogar become incredibly suspicious of Jed’s actions, tough Starflower remains convinced he’s truthful. As they interact with him, Rhogar’s keen intuition and criminal background lends him the insight to realize that Jed is lying and asks him how he managed to find the cave of the “giant” after he claimed he didn’t know where it had gone. As Jed claims he followed the tracks of the giant, Bug grabs him by the shirt and attempts to intimidate him.

Jed appears to be incredibly frightened by Bug, but Rhogar recognizes that Jed is lying and is in all actuality unusually calm about this turn of events. Rhogar decides to attack Jed, to the surprise of Starflower, and Jed breaks from Bug’s grasp, pulling out a dagger as they begin to fight each other.

As they trade blows, Bug manages to grapple Jed, pinning his arms down so that Starflower can confront him with the amulet she has around her neck. She presses the amulet to his face to see if he is affected by it, but Jed is unaffected and instead breaks Bug’s hold on him and wrenching the amulet from Starflower’s neck. Amulet in hand, Jed attempts to flee the area after taking a lot of damage from the party’s combined efforts.

The party is unsuccessful in stopping Jed from escaping, and they curse their encounter with the man and head back to the Three Cats Inn, where they purchase a room, take a bath and rest for the night. Before they sleep, Bug ties a message to his pet mouse, Pickles, and sends her off toward Riket, hopefully to return to him with answers on what they dealt with that day…


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