Zerith

How The Story Began

(Imagine this in yellow writing, scrolling off into the distance over a black starfield…)

The year is 5802 on the Imperial calendar. The place is Highwater, seat of the Duchy of Highwater in the Kingdom of Norlan. It is summer, and news has just reached the North that the King of Zerithia, Velin III, has declared himself the founder of the Third Zerithian Empire! He sat on the Imperial Throne in Saint Calor’s Palace without being disintegrated, so it is apparently true. The Second Zerithian Empire, which was founded after the Kingdom of Norlan, only included The Three Kingdoms, so hopefully Emperor Velin won’t consider the Kingdom part of the Empire. No one can be certain, though, so there is a lot of trepidation about what this news means for Norlan, and for the good citizens of Highwater!

Characters chosen so far:

  • Dragonkin paladin
  • Half-elven warlock
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A Chance Meeting In Highwater
Hochsom 15, 5802 IY

Highlights:

  • Sid finds a piece of paper with Bhaz and Seija’s names on it (and maybe a ring that won’t come off)
  • Kerin tells Seija that he has work for an adventurous group, which should include the dragonkin named Bhazrios
  • Sieja tracks down the only newly arrived dragonkin holy warrior, Bhaz
  • Oyugun sees a half-elf and dragonkin talking in the middle of the Platz, near the Grey Tower Gate, and intrigued, approaches
  • Sid overhears Seija introducing herself to Bhaz, connecting the names with the note he found
  • A discussion ensues between all four adventurers, during which Seija relates news of the paying work
  • Sid is nervous about any work connected with the authorities, and panics after Seija communicates telepathically with him, fleeing
  • Oyugun catches up to Sid and convinces him to return to the discussion
  • Kerin shows up and relates further details of the job, an investigation into sightings of activity east and south of the mining town of Feriton, where no one should be (Iron Mountains are very dangerous, former Dwarven cities abandoned more than 10,000 years ago, etc.)
  • Seija and Bhaz are interested in the work, Oyugun decides to come along for lack of anything better to do and Sid decides both that it’s a good idea to fulfil this mission, and it’s very strange that he thinks that it’s a good idea to fulfil this mission
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Travel Days

Highlights:

- party takes the booked passage on a lake ship to the Norwass River, and then up-river as far as ships can travel
- on board as well are an Arran Priestess (perhaps late 30’s or early 40’s) and a young, well-born woman, both Zerithian
- Sid discovers that the Arran Priestess is Sister Kuerella, the Chaplain of Fendon-on-Mount and she is escorting the count’s niece, Tessa who is visiting her uncle’s holdings. It will be the first time she has met him.
- stay overnight at “transfer camp,” which is a permanent camp with a couple of warehouses, an inn and one private building
- Sid takes in some air before going to bed and stumbles into a warehouse where numerous crates are stacked
- in the crates, Sid discovers a large cache of good quality weapons of all sorts, hidden below farm items and takes a dagger as a souvenir. The crates are marked as belonging to Karil, a well-known merchant house
- the next day, the party continues their trip on barges, travelling against the sluggish current but with a stiff tailwind; there are several other passengers taking the same convoy of four barges, but none on the party’s barge
- they stop for the night, but are attacked by orcs shortly after moonrise
- Bhaz uses his breath weapon to injure the group attacking the party’s barge, killing one that had already been hit with an arrow by Sid
- Bhaz, standing well in front of the rest of the party, is attacked by the remaining five orcs and dropped
- the party manage to down the other orcs, but not before Bhaz bleeds out
- Brother Terum and Oren, two priests of the Shield of Honour (a Relnonian Order) rush forward from one of the other barges (where the battles were over more quickly) and are able to Revivify Bhaz
- the barge crew insist on travelling through the night now, and reach Feriton by morning
- going to wait until the next day to speak with the Count

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Waiting for the Count in Feriton
AKA One Night in Feriton
  • Feriton is SMALL! One fortified building, 1 smelter and an inn. Little else of note
  • After returning to the Count’s residence, the party are shown into the coffee room and Sister Serina joins us.
  • Captain Temen is asked to join us when Sid mentions the weapon smuggling. He is concerned about it and offers a reward for more detailed information on the source
  • Sister Serina removes the curse on the ring that Sid had and he is now able to take it off. He still feels strangely compelled to stay with the party though
  • Miners in the common room have wild stories of stranger creatures. No hunters have seen these creatures. The party things the miners have some strange fancies
  • There are no ladies of the night available in Feriton. There is some sadness at this, especially from the less cultured members of the party
  • The party stays the night in the local inn and heads out early the next morning. They head south to the kickball fields where three different valleys are visible
  • After a thorough search of the valleys, one has an alcove at the end where a figure is crouched down. As Sid warns the party, he vanishes, then re-appears and attacks.
  • More orc-like creatures appear and the party is overwhelmed
  • They wake in a room, tied up. Sid is able to free himself and assist the rest of the party in getting free.
  • The parties weapons and armour are gone
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Trapped somewhere in the Iron Mountains
(Tied) up the creek without a paddle. Includes the Lam Lies Down On My Way
  • A good old fashioned dungeon crawl ensues! Much fun is had
  • Weapons are found, orcs and ghouls are killed. Treasure is liberated and appropriated.
  • Strange rituals appear to have been going on and there is a pattern on the floor of one room
  • On the way out of the mountain, Sister Serina turns on the party, summons imps and attempts to ensure the party never makes it back to Feriton
  • She is rudely disabused of this notion as the party unleashes a whole can of whop-ass on her. The party are provided much needed help in the form of Oyugun (recently recovered from a strange affliction, necessitating he stay in Feriton) and Sister Merami who gallop into the fray
  • The party make it back to Feriton. Sister Serina is revealed to be part of another faction within the Sisterhood – the Dark Hand
  • It appears as if an Evil Cult is trying to take over the world! Sister Merami is concerned about the piece of paper that was found in the cave.
  • The party collects its reward from the Captain Temen and has an uneventful return to Highwater
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Back in Highwater
  • Sister Merami introduces the party to the Chaplain to the Countess of Bubblemere, Sister Derina. Details of the evil cult are discussed, the paper is passed to her (?)
  • Sister Derina is looking for someone to complete the Arran Sisterhood prayer ritual with her. For completing this, the Petitioner may be blessed with a magic item of uncommon value
  • A merchant vanished 3 days ago. Front door was open, purse of gold left on the table. The merchant’s name is Tabin Derliner.
  • Sid makes contact with The Upright Men, who are having some trouble with their operatino of smuggling grain out of the city. It appears as if another party has been taking the goods! Sid wants to find out why in order to bring him back into favour with his employers.
  • The party meets with Kerin again and he lets them know that the symbol is of an Old God. It was not able to be translated.
  • The merchant’s house is investigated by the party. Bhaz talks his way in with the sergeant on the door.
  • The watch are taking the investigation seriously. A Commander of the White Hart, a Captain of the Watch and 2 lower level paladins investigate the disappearance with magic and then return to the Ducal Palace.
  • The cook is wined+dined but knows nothing of much use. The merchant was a quiet man who kept himself to himself
  • Saija investigates upstairs, as does Sid (unbeknownst to the party), who steals a ring and cuff links from the merchant’s bedroom
  • Saija undertakes the Blessing of Arra (and seems to enjoy it)
  • The location that the warehouse where the goods disappeared from is determined. There will be a shipment the next night.
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Protecting an Empty Warehouse
  • When the warehouse is investigated, two thugs have replaced the Upright Men guards. They are found dead inside. Bazin a low level thug/informer appears and is intoxicated. He talks of ‘good wine’ before falling unconscious.
  • Bazin stops breathing. He is taken to the local Upright Men safe house but they have all been killed, apparently by poison. Bazin is taken to a local temple for healing
  • The more magic-aware members of the party determine that the warehouse seems to have the same ‘evil smell’ of magic that the house did. Wizards from the Upright Men have detected abjuration magic.
  • Sid fences the ring and cuff links, which turn out to be HOT and where scryed by the Order of the White Hart. An invisible stalker was sent to retrieve the item and it attempted to break into the safe
  • The Upright Men are unhappy with Sid over this and have stopped operations due to the 6 lost shipments. He offers to make amends by guarding the next warehouse shipment with ‘his crew’.
  • Sid informs the party of both the job and that Saija is in trouble with the law and that they must lay low for a while.
  • The party hides in the Maiden’s Vale, where they discover that the Duke’s daughter visited with a few Sisters suspected to be of The Dark Hand due to them engaging in unsanctioned activities
  • Sister Merami carries out three prayer rituals. The party gets some phat l00t.
  • The shipment to the warehouse is successfully protected by the party, despite the appearance of fearsome demonic orcs seeming to teleport inside the warehouse. The Upright Men were impressed with defence of the warehouse.
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