Welcome To The Party 2

A 10 Hour Gaming Session Of AD&D

2nd Edition (Spikehelm Campaign World)

The Back Story: (aka the idea that became the setup for this game)
Continuing from the last episode of Welcome To The Party.
We are also introducing another new player, Dougal, and revisiting a second old PC, Mathius. As they are joining in-game, they will not know the previous PCs from the first episode and the players decided that they wouldn't know each other either.
The Adventurers: (aka the Player Characters)
Name Class Level Gender Race Brief Description
Nikigga Thief/Mage 2/1 Male Albein (Elf) N/A
Rodan Ranger 2 Male Southern Durnite (Human) N/A
Mathius Battle-Mage 3 Male Dracôrian (Human) N/A
Dougal Thief (Scout) 1 Male Southern Durnite (Human) N/A
Session Start: Sunday - 3:00 pm
Location: Southern Durnite
Game Date: The 7th day, in the of month of Tending, in the year of the Gold Hunter, 6th Age, 941 years after the Great Crossing.
Moon Phase: Waning Moon
Mathius had tracked the last of the evil things that had killed all his friends to a small settlement, only to find the Ogres dead outside the gates -- seeing those within were on high alert, he decided not to approach and instead rode away to look for other shelter.  An hour away he heard music and followed it to hidden camp of a wagon family -- the same one in fact that Nikigga and Rodan had met the day before.
He had many old wounds from his month long battle with the raiders and as he shared a meal with the family, it finally all caught up with him -- he passed out in mid-bite.  He awoke much later to find his wounds healed by the druid, Thaen.
The 6th Gold Hunter, in Tending.  8 / 4 / 941 GC.  (Waning Moon)
The next morning after a wonderful breakfast, Mathius rode his horse back towards the settlement.  He neared a ruin sitting atop a hill and to his surprise there was a person moving down the hill waving him down -- not something that one normally saw in Southern Durnite.  Cautiously he slowed his mount and at a fair distance away he stopped and dismounted.  Then, when the man was close enough, he discreetly cast a few detection spells to help him determine who and what he was.
In the meantime, Nikigga was at the settlement haggling for goods that their herbalist had, while Rodan decided to look at the old ruins on a nearby hill.
Dougal inquired as to where he was -- his last memory was of fleeing through secret tunnels under Haring Citadel to retrieve his Captain's armour and weapons.  As they talked, he realised that the ruins on the hill and the surrounding landscape could. in fact. be the remains of Haring and its outlying city.  He asked for the date and found that he was over 190 years into the future -- all in a flash and a blink of an eye.  Just to make sure, he climbed high into the ruins to get a better look; that's when he saw someone heading across the plains towards them.
They decided to go out and meet the person -- Rodan.  They talked for awhile and Dougal brought up the fact that this area was once a great city and that where he came out of the ground was very close to a stash of potentially useful treasure.
The three agreed to join forces and spent the day trying to dig up the treasure.  After seeing that Mathius wouldn't fit into the slim hole that Dougal came out of, the other two went in and took a quick look around, finding nothing but the ancient walls of the tunnels.  Dougal was sure that the room he wanted was nearby, so they returned to the surface and headed back to the settlement to obtain something better to dig with.  Upon their return, it was too late to dig much, so instead they opened the entry hole up enough so that Mathius would be able to get inside on the morrow.
During the night they were kept awake by a hidden predator that growled around the edge of their camp.
The 6th Gold Hunter, in Tending.  9 / 4 / 941 GC.  (Waning Moon)
In the morning they found no sign of the predator, so decided to continue hunting for the promised treasure.  Mathius used a spell that could locate objects to determine where to dig -- by focusing on a long sword, at Dougal's behest.  Hours later they broke through into a room.
Dougal recognised it as one of the primary guardrooms, but it was in ruins.  Obviously it was abandoned; there were signs of a rushed exit with items strewn about, but those items left behind were all rusted and decayed due to the decades of exposure and dampness.  Within was also another door which Dougal knew would lead to the Captain of the Guard's quarters.
This room was even worse off, with a large stagnant pool of sludge taking up a third of the floor.  Everything was covered in mold and fungus; the only thing that looked in the least intact was a decaying wardrobe cabinet.  Within were the oilskin wrapped weapons -- a long and short sword -- and the Captain's helm.  Rodan also found a crumbling box full of medals-of-honour and another box was full of coins from his time.  It wasn't much but even that made the day's digging worthwhile.
When they got back to the settlement, Nikigga had already left -- mistakenly gone south after Rodan.  As Mathius and Dougal didn't have any firm direction, they agreed to travel with him for awhile -- safety in numbers and all that.
The 6th Gold Hunter, in Tending.  10 / 4 / 941 GC.  (Waning Moon)
While travelling to find Nikigga they came across a small acre of woodlands, where Rodan hunted and killed a small deer.  As they started to cook it, the ground began to rumble.  Soon they could see a slow moving group of Orcs and their slaves -- who were headed directly towards them.  They abandoned the woods and fled into the plains.
Later that night they returned, to see if they could help free the slaves.  Dougal used his scout-craft to get in as close as possible.  He made it close enough to see over 50 slaves being whipped and worked to cut down the trees.  Guarding them were over 20 Orcs and at least 1 Ogre or giant -- he didn't see it but he saw its results; one poor slave, with his legs ripped off, catapulted into the plains beyond the woods with a thunderous roar of almost child-like laughter.
When Dougal returned, he was spotted by one of the Orc outriders.  Only some fancy bladework saved his life.  That started a chain of events that led to 3 more outriders being killed and their gear and horses taken.  The last of the outriders was able to sound off his horn before he was killed -- forcing the group of adventurers to flee into the plains.  They were able to get away with 2 horses, the dead Orcs and their gear.  The Orcs had a symbol of a clawed hand with a bloody slash through its palm, emblazoned on their armour and saddles.
Once everything had calmed down and they could safely assume the Orcs were not following them, Dougal had enough time to think about what had happened.  All the settlements seemed to have defensive walls, but not the organisation to work together to help defend each other.  He had the training from his days within Haring Castle, but he lacked the gear and renown to begin.  However, the Orcs did have the gear and with their recent success tonight, an idea came to him.
This new world he found himself in was in desperate need of leaders to train people on how to defend against the evils that roamed these lands.  As they defeated those evils, they would take whatever they could use, and the renown and fame would follow them.  This would help them gain the trust of the nearby settlements, which in turn would bring in recruits to the cause.  Once the idea and training began to spread, this world would change for the better.  Perhaps even Haring Castle could be rebuilt as the bastion for good that it once symbolised.
The 6th Gold Hunter, in Tending.  11 / 4 / 941 GC.  (Waning Moon)
Mathius knew that Orcs hated sunlight and were at their worst in the brightest day of light, so they planned their next attack for noon.  This time he had spells of silencing ready, so that their targets would not be able to sound an alarm.
They succeeded in killing 8 more guards but were only able to get away with 3 horses and dead Orcs with them.  Still, 5 sets of armour, weapons and horses were a good start, thought Dougal.
However, when they returned to their camp they found that someone else had discovered it and stolen everything.
Rodan and Dougal found the tracks of the horses and they quickly mounted their 3 newly taken ones leaving the dead Orcs and gear behind at the camp.  They tracked them for over 5 hours, through rough and harsh terrain --twice they lost them -- if they weren't both such experienced trackers the thieves would have got away.  With the sun almost set they finally caught sight of them and with a death defying charge overcame them.  A brief battle ensued, but within moments it was obvious that the thieves were in fact escaped slave girls.
Once they managed to extricate themselves from the fight -- and assure the women that they weren't slavers -- introductions went around.  Geiti said she was the mother of Illmia -- although they looked about the same age -- and Sorli said she was Geiti's sister.
When asked, Geiti told of the destruction of their settlement and subsequent capture and enslavement by Orcish Raiders just over a month ago.  She had tried her best to shelter the others, and eventually she was able to lull one of their captors enough to kill him and get them all away.  Which brought them to what they thought was an Orc camp where they happily stole everything.
Dougal asked them some more questions about their captors -- there were 11 armed and mounted raiders left.
It was almost nightfall so they couldn't make it back to their original camp.  It took just under an hour for Rodan to find a safe place to camp -- a stand of 13 massive trees that sheltered a small crystal clear brook and pond.  Strange thing was that once they had setup their camp, they couldn't get a fire going, even with magic.  Even with that, they decided to stay.  They were all filthy and weary and that cool clean water beckoned.  The women didn't have anything to wear but the Orcish armour.  The guys dug into their packs and were able to cobble enough pieces together so that everyone could get clean and cover up in fresh clothes.  They shared what food they had and talked at length about many things.
Afterwards, everyone had an extremely restful and peaceful night's sleep, surrounded by the protective limbs of the trees.  Deep into the night, after everyone was lulled to sleep by the gentle sounds of the breeze moving through the branches, the trees had their own discussion, and looking to the stars choose the way they would travel.  They thanked the Water for coming to the surface to refresh them and allowed it to return into the earth.
They began to move which woke up the man who had been travelling with them.  He swung out of the tallest tree near the receding pond and watched as the ancient ones moved away across the plains.  These people interested him and he wanted to watch them and learn more about them.
The 6th Gold Hunter, in Tending.  12 / 4 / 941 GC.  (Waning Moon)
Before the light of dawn the trees were completely gone from sight.  A little after that, the woman woke up and was startled by the mysterious disappearance of their shelter.  They moved away from the spot, farther into the plains and stopped almost on top of their watcher.  They talked quietly with each other to decide what their next move would be.
Once everyone was awake and had settled down from the oddity of the missing trees, they began to talk about if they should go after the Raiders that had the girls or continue with their attacks against the Slavers in the woods.
Dougal also made an impassioned speech about how everything was falling into place and that it felt like the High Lord's mystical hand seemed to be helping them towards creating a better world.  This made up the watcher's mind, he would act now.
-- To Be Continued --
Session End: Monday - 1:00 am