Thursday, October 28, 2010

Gold Star Manor Part III

Ending our series of actual play reports at the Gold Star Anime is the in-game journal of Lady Janus, elven cleric of silvanus. This was submitted to me by Big Jerry and I thought you would all like to see a player's view of the campaign.
From the journal of Lady Janus.


Human Thug “Hazar”, Elven Cleric “Janus”, Halfling Fighter “Hunter”, and the Dwarf Runecaster “Heimdell” are now traveling back towards Oakwatch.

When we hear people rushing through the brush. Followed by people running out of the brush through a clearing and entering a rocky area off to one side of our position.

We soon see the reason for their flight, as a large band of Orcs rushes into the center to the clearing!

To our surprise, we recognize the other party as consisting of the Human Assassin (Claw of Kalis) “Leon Shadowwalker”, the Gnome Wizard “Typhon”, and the wizards Orc servant.

Battle is fierce, Janus casts sleep, Typhon casts sleep, Heimdell casts a fireball and takes out most of the first Orc attack wave, at least one Orc is so disheartened that he flees the battlefield, but remaining survivors continue to attack the party.

A second wave of Orcs enters the clearing! The will be close enough to attack in minutes!

A few of the first Orcs overwhelm the Wizard, he is down and at –4.

The Orc servant is leaning over the Wizard – Hunter thinks he is going to cut the helpless Gnome’s throat, so he rushes over with his Orc-slaying sword, and decapitates the Orc with a mighty blow!

Janus tries to heal him – but only manages +2 – Wizard still down.

Hazar attacks a large Orc with his sword, but trips over the Wizard and manages to slash Hunter for –7 damage! Janus heals Hunter for +7.

Hunter launches into a series of 7 lightning fast blows, striking 5 Orcs, and killing 3!

Then Janus heals Typhon to a +4, so the Wizard is back in the action. Even though the battle is still raging, Typhon is enraged (understatement of the year) at the death of his Orc slave! A natural 20 reveals that “his” orc was not cut down by his enraged fellows, but by one of the party members! Typhon and Hunter nearly come to blows, but the battle demands they put this aside until later!

Leon casts “Suggestion” and entraps 3 Orcs.

Typhon casts “Sleep” and 2 of the 3 Orcs go down, but one large one is still standing, and still under Leon’s Suggestion. A search of the fallen Orcs finds 400 silver.

To placate Typhon, (who nonetheless is still furious!) Leon even threatens to kill Hunter in his sleep for upsetting his close traveling companion so, but is convinced to stay his temper for now. Hazar suggests that the wizard should just take the still mesmerized large-sized Orc along as an improved replacement for his lost servant. Hazar even suggests that a larger sized Orc could be more useful to the party – being able to carry more than an ordinary one. After much glaring, a liberal round of threats from Leon, and a great gnashing of teeth by the Dwarf, the party agrees to continue their trek towards the village of Oakwatch.

Nearing the town, another familiar face is met on the road! The Human Thothian Mage “Alaghazar” has completed his magical studies elsewhere, and is also on his way to Oakwatch!

Arriving at Oakwatch, the party must pass two guards at the gate. They will not allow an Orc, even one under a wizards control, to enter the town. Janus loans Typhon some shackles and the rest of the party enters Oakwatch, leaving the wizard outside the gates, and the Orc further retrained by the shackles to a stout tree.

Party again decides to stay at the “Laughing Rabbit” inn while in town. 40 silver each suffices to gain rooms and meals for a week, and then the party separates to pursue various individual matters and re-supply. Janus arranges to purchase several rune stones from the temple of Thor. She pays the temple priests 14 gold for 6 runes to be completed, however, it will also take one week to cast the proper spells for each rune. Only one rune (cast fireball) is completed before the adventures depart on their next adventure, she will have to return to Oakwatch at some point in order to claim the others.

Others visit temples, or local thieves guilds, or magic sellers, the assassin buys poison.

Around this time, the Wizard and Assassin go off on an errand of their own, leaving the other 5 to continue adventuring together.

Meanwhile, back at the Laughing Rabbit, Hazar has been approached by a suspicious individual who claims to have some land for sale. Hazar being a gullible looking sort.

The man claims to be a nobleman down on his luck, and offers to sell his family’s estate and home. Checking around reveals that others have purchased this same land, but are presumed to have perished trying to occupy it.

While checking on the deed’s authenticity, we happen to learn that it is presently the year 4453 in the Wilder lands, and the estate was granted to the Noble Rump family in 4024.

So Hazar buys the Big Rump House from the former Noble Rump owner, Gains a fancy-shamancy title, and enlists the aid of the rest of the party to help him deal with the house’s apparent pest infestation.

Alaghazar thinks this would be a perfect time to guild our group of adventurers, talking Hazar into starting something they are calling “Acquisition Incorporated” Janus reluctantly joins also – not certain why a band of crooks need a name to steal from each other under?

Nearing Hazar’s new home, we see that it is incredibly large, and is in an unusually good state of repair for as long as it has been empty.

Janus asks the plants growing along the path about possible dangers they may have seen.

Plants tell her of the presence of Undead, Orcs & Spirits!

It is decided to check out a detached gazebo first.

Two statues stand near it, both appear also to be in a remarkable well preserved condition!

Janus casts “Detect Evil”, seems that the statues are merely under preservation spells, not evil. The spell does reveal that there is something evil located just behind the nearest windows of the house!

Alaghazar peers through the window – and spies a miniature red dragon sleeping on a couch!

Hazar tries to sneak in the front door, but makes a LOUD noise! He enters a huge room, and finds 3 corpses lying on the floor near the door. Along with the title to the place, Hazar now has a huge map showing the general outline of the structure, but lacking details. Hazar attempts to add maps of the areas we explore as we travel through and under the huge structure. Presumably, the corpses were previous owners that also bought it from Rump! Hazar beheads them just in case they are actually undead lying in ambush. Large painting on the side walls of the room. Hazar goes up to the first one, but before he even gets there, a very large reptilian creature approaches him.

Hazar bravely tries to run back outside of the house, but Alaghazar has already bravely run out before him and barred the door! However, the creature simply asks Hazar if he would like it to take his cloak? Hazar attempts to hand it his cloak, but it drops right through the creature’s hands – revealing that it is actually a spirit and not a living creature at all. At which point the ghost rapidly runs away into the building

Josh goes up to the first painting on the wall. Suddenly a scythe strikes Hazar in the back, does 2 damage.

Alaghazar checks out another painting, a small rain cloud forms over his head and starts following him around – while is raining only on him!

Janus casts “Detect Traps”, 4 more painting now show an evil glow!

Hazar loves trying to set off traps, so he approaches the nearest glowing painting and tries to disarm it by throwing daggers at it from a short distance away. One of the daggers hits the painting – and all of a sudden Hazar turns around and starts attacking Hunter! Hunter takes 6 damage, before Heimdell web’s Hazar to stop him from moving, and Janus casts 4th level “Protection from Evil” spell, it surrounds Janus and extends over Hazar, breaking the evil influence connected to Hazar from the painting!

Alaghazar casts “Invisibility” on himself, but thanks to the rain still falling on him, he still is visible as a kind of clear outline of himself! Alaghazar looks down a hallway leading off from the side of the room closest to where the dragon had been seen sleeping from the outside. Suddenly he screams and falls unconscious! He is awakened by the rain falling on his face.

Incidentally, the DM’s (Rob’s) real scream is so loud that it makes both physical Jerry’s and John to jump! D&D with Rob is really like being there with your characters themselves! Josh however seems unstartled – for him it was probably no louder than one of his usual farts!

In a hurry to activate more traps, Hazar ignores the hallway that caused Alaghazar to scream and pass out, and opens another door. No sooner has Hazar opened the door, than he is seen to slump down to the floor vomiting for several minutes. (Must have been a large mirror on the other side of the door?)

Alaghazar, now recovered from whatever he saw, opens an opposite door, and sees what must have been a jail. 3 skeletons hang from manacles on the walls. Janus is detecting evil from several places nearby behind the walls the party has already passed, and a VERY LARGE evil behind a door at the end of the hall! Alaghazar enters the room with the skeletons, and finds a ring of keys on top of a decrepit old desk, but nothing else, so he tries opening some manacles and cell doors (they work) part of a false ceiling collapses just inside one of the cells. He then opens a third door and finds another room looking like some titanic struggle had taken place in it sometime in the past. Alaghazar explores and finds a bottle labeled “Red Raven” in a trunk. He also finds a dug out hole with chewed edges.

Back at the room Hazar opened, Hunter tries to go in, there is a strong stink, and Hunter is also on the floor puking! Alaghazar tries to look in, and runs away! Not able to abide such evil near her, Janus calls upon Sylvanus to aid her in purifying the room, holding Sylvanus’ silver symbol before her, and averting her eyes from some pictures hung on the walls. The pictures are so evil, that the anger the God Sylvanus! Suddenly they all burst into flame, destroying the evil images of obscenities and abominations that merely looking at had defeated three men!

The room is not yet totally clear however, as from the back corner an evil demon-headed staff rises into the air and attacks her. Janus throws holy water on the staff, doing 4 damage to it, but not destroying it. Suddenly the staff stops as it hits the edge of Janus’s still active protection from evil spell. It can not pass through, and so Janus uses it to push the staff back into a corner where it can’t move, and Heimdell hits it with a magic missile – shattering the staff! Opening another door, and continuing into the next room in pursuit of the evil she had sensed behind the wall earlier, Janus sees a pool of darkness in one corner near the floor. She then cast “Light”, and revealed the hidden spirit to be the same one that had appeared to Hazar when he first entered the building. Janus tries to “Turn” the evil shade, and luckily casts a magic 20 – causing the ghost to be shredded! This type of spirit could have caused major bodily harm if it had not been so quickly dispatched. Nothing else found in the room.

Hunter now opens the door behind which Janus has been sensing the truly large evil energy! (Alaghazar is bribing Hunter to open things and test things like manacles and this door for him!)

Revealed is a large torture chamber with pits in the floor and torture equipment and tools scattered about, and a large statue of Kalis sitting behind an alter at one end of the room.

The evil seems to be coming from above the pit in the center of the room, where chains dangle down from above. The chains start to move towards us and lash out at Hazar. Surprisingly he dodges, then Janus repeats the move with the evil staff, and moves up so that the party is shielded from the questing chains by the circle of protection centering around her. Hazar then goes over to the evil goddess Kalis’s statue, and using a rope, he manages to topple it onto the floor where it shatters without touching it. Nothing happens? Still ignoring the evil in the center of the room, Hazar goes down a trap door he finds on the other side of the room from the statue (dodging past the chains on the other side of the pit this time) Before Hazar reaches the bottom, something grabs his legs and pulls him into the room below and hurls him to the floor! Somehow Hazar gets lucky and wins the sudden fight with an Ogre! Janus hears Hazar’s initial cries for help, and she and Hunter rush to climb down to help him, but when they get there the ogre is already dead. Hazar is badly wounded, partly from being thrown to the stone floor at the beginning of the fight. Janus heals Hazar. Then Hazar goes looking for traps on another door, but amazingly none activate and strike him!

Behind the door is a maze of tunnels. The party tramps along the tunnels for what seems like a long time without finding anything. Finally Hazar finds a room, containing undead of course! Four Skeletons and 2 Wights attack. Hazar and Hunter took out the skeletons, and Janus “turned” both wights! Then back into the tunnels! Find stairs leading upward, find ourselves back inside the house, but not sure where inside! Janus is detecting evil behind the walls on both sides!

We locate a huge dinning room, with statues located all around the side walls, remains of magnificent tapestries along the back wall, and two huge tables around each of which are seated 12 skeletons! Here Hunter decides to pull a Hazar-like stunt, and instead of trying to determine a plan or course of action, Hunter starts throwing rocks at the nearest seated skeleton! The first stone misses – nothing happens?.. He throws again and hits the helmet of one – BONG! Now ALL the skeletons leap up and attack Hunter, and KILL him in the first attack! (I said it was a stupid move, only surprised it wasn’t Hazar who did it!) Heimdell casts a fireball into room, and manages to do so with such accuracy, that 23 of the 24 skeletons are destroyed! Janus then turns the final one. Just inside the room we find an active teleport circle! Alaghazar is overjoyed! While they are standing there examining it, Hazar suddenly attempts to push Hunter and Alaghazar into the circle! They manage to catch their balance, but what was Hazar thinking? Oh Wait, WHEN does Hazar ever think!!! Alaghazar is still excited though, so he ends up stepping onto the teleport circle along with Hunter after all, unable to resist seeing where it will take them!

Now we have Alaghazar and Hunter fighting 5 giant rats in a chamber they have no idea where it might be at! They killed the rats, and decided to explore further before trying to return via the circle.

Meanwhile Hazar wanders over and pokes one of the statues in the dinning room, and immediately starts screaming! His eye is blinded and in pain! Janus tries to “cure” him to no effect, then tries “Remove Curse” and the screaming stops! Cured – Hazar starts looking for more death traps to try.

Heimdell notices that around one of the pillars are triggers set to make it fall on the unwary. For some reason Hazar doesn’t go and step on these?

Investigating further, Heimdell notices a secret door hidden behind the tapestry.

Hazar and Janus join him, then they open the door.

On the other side they discover a courtyard that is open to the sky, like nothing that is shown on the map of the estate Hazar has! Statues line both sides of the courtyard, and one is set so close to the secret door, that one has to touch it in order to pass by it. Janus casts detect magic, and discovers that the near statue, and one other are enchanted.

Hazar pokes the first one. - it looks at him – then it utters something that sounds like a prophecy that might have come from Sylvanus. So Janus thanks the statue for sharing it’s wisdom. Then Hazar goes up to the second enchanted statue and SLAPS it! This releases a spell that puts Hazar under a geas – to seek out the bride of the coven and slay him. Hazar thinks it is unimportant, and goes back to exploring. Although the statue also told him that if he fails to fulfill the geas he will die!

Hunter and Alaghazar find another room, and 2 more giant rats. After dispatching them, they proceed down a 5 foot wide passage, passing more rooms, plus a bedroom with a statue at one end (The floor looks badly corroded, as if by acid, so they decide not to enter it). Looking out of a window, they are able to a small courtyard about 5 stories below them.
This was where we ended this adventure for this week.

Next Adventure sets out from Gold Star Anime on November 20th!

This being the “Gilligan’s Island” of Gaming…

New (And Old!) adventurers are still welcome to join in our quest to “De-Louse Hazar’s House!”

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