Broken Home

Catching Up

After plunging through the dungeon with the party, Menden managed to make it through the trials and complete her pilgrimage, Menden received the Robes of Equinus.

After this, the party traveled into Cinderhome and went to the Fighter’s Guild. Once hearing of it, they completed this contract:

The Helpless Maiden:
Previous Quest: None
Trigger Condition: Accept the Quest from the Fighters’ Guild
Intro Dialogue: The quest ticket reads: “The Guild requests thine aid in a matter of great urgency. The daughter of the King of Gideon has been kidnapped! His majesty is in great distress! Thine Guild hath been contracted to find and return the princess to her rightful place in the palace. Speak with thine Guild Master to accept this contract.”
Quest Objective: Find the Princess and bring her home.
Quest Dungeon: Dungeon 7 on Dungeons for Quests
Follow-Up Quest: The King’s Favor
Quest Outline:
Accepting the Quest
The Guild Master introduces the quest to them and orders them to Ginendoa. He informs them that the reward is 10,000 Gold per person, knighthood (asking about this reveals that knighthood pardons all outstanding warrants and grants sway in all towns of Gideon), and a choice of item within the Palace’s Vault.
To Ginendoa
The party arrives and speaks with the King, who reveals that she was last seen in her room. Investigating the room reveals a fine dust that used to be the curtains, suggesting magical means of entry. The party may question anyone at the palace.
The Questioning
Reveal at a random time that a strange merchant had been in the palace the day before selling wares. He has not been seen since. Investigating further at taverns reveals that the Darkened Brew on Merchant’s Way is a favorite of all travelling merchants.
The Darkened Brew
Questioning the Inn Keeper reveals that the merchant they are looking for left in quite a hurry was here, but vanished two nights ago. He was last seen travelling to the city wall to meet a caravan of his.
The Wall
Investigating the wall and the party finds the dead body of the merchant, his clothes having been stolen. The merchant was stabbed in the back of the head quickly and efficiently, suggesting a trained hand. Investigating around the body reveals a black coin dropped in the mud.
The Coin
Taking the coin to a library reveals little. However, the party notices a figure following them. The figure is an assassin from the Assassin’s Guild. He is easily apprehended and reveals that he took a side job for fun. He was hired by a man in Freedom to kidnap the princess.
Freedom
Arriving in Freedom, the party asks around and finds a man matching the description staying in a local Inn called the Strange River.
Strange River
The man is in the inn, and the party gets him to reveal that there are a group of cultists who hired him to find a kidnapper. They are holding a ritual in a nearby cave.
The Cave
The cultists are going to use the princess as a vessel for the demon they worship. The party must stop this ritual.
Pardon Me
The party, assuming they’re still alive, is pardoned by the King and knighted. They receive a major boost in fame which grants them 10% off at all stores and entry to all Guilds should they choose it. They gain entry to the Guards “Guild” and can now collect bounties by catching criminals. You can moderately order around the Guards.
The Quest advances the party two ranks in the Fighters’ Guild automatically.

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Catacombs are Gnome Fun

With the rest of the party distracted by the allure of fame and fortune in the arena, Logan and Menden decided to do a few things on their own.

First, Menden fought a solo match in the Arena. Gravely out-maneuvered and out-classed by the Half-Orc Sorcerer she fought against, Menden threw herself at the enemy in a hilarious and ill-planned suicide attempt and took away half of the Arena Points she would have received upon victory even though she lost.

During this, Logan met a Gnome Bard, Skanath, who gave a letter from Katil, mentioning that he had a new lead on the next weapon of the Six, known as Deliverance, and that he suggested the party return to Fort Inosha as soon as possible. Katil then traveled to the Cinderhome library and researched a few topics, but uncovered nothing interesting. Taking a brief study break in the Cinderhome Mages’ Guild Hall, Logan ran into the head of the newly formed necromancy division in Cyacus Towers, who was in town investigating a strange death. Logan offered his help upon returning to Cinderhome.

Skanath, who had been sent by Katil to help the party, went to the local Tavern and asked around for ways to enter the Catacombs under Ginendoa without entering the city and breaching its magical defenses. He found a traveler who informed him about a discovered entrance in the sewers.

With this information, Logan, Menden, and Skanath all traveled to Ginendoa. They entered the catacombs and encountered powerful skeletal warriors. With only one of the many branches explored, they readied their weapons and plunged deeper into the dungeon.

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Into the Arena

With Menden and Logan each looking into their own objectives, the rest of the party decided to participate in the Arena.

Arriving at the Arena, the group registered and were accepted. After waiting for an hour, they joined into a fight with four other opponents, and quickly ended the trivial matter, netting some arena points for the arena store.

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Doing Their Job

After their brief and… “adventurous” stay in Traveler’s Rest, the party travelled to Ginendoa to complete their massive quest log.

They began by looking for information related to the powerful weapons they had discovered that the Dark Mage seems so intent on getting. To this end, Logan sought out Katil, a famous historian of artifacts. To speed up the research, Logan helped Katil and while doing so found information relating to the Helm of the Sentinel, Vestments of Equinus, Ring of the Voidwalker, Tome of the Infinite, and Cavern of Crossroads.

In addition, Alethe and Strale investigated and found the man who stole all of that money from the military and successfully returned it.

Finally, Menden found the prophet of Zayutan and discovered that the tablet that held the instructions for finding a new Zayutan was hidden in Fire’s Den.

With all of that questing under their belt, the party returned to Cinderhome and prepared to enter the newly opened Arena.

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Of Assassins and Impropriety

After turning in the night-shade quest for the Mages’ Guild and received their initiation coins, Soren and Logan accepted a new quest to investigate some crimes being committed by a mage in Traveler’s Rest. The party who are members of the Fighters’ Guild received a request to find someone who robbed the military coffers and resulted in the Fighters’ Guild losing their biggest contract. In addition, Menden received a vision from Lyseria and was asked to look for a tablet that was left behind by Zayutan to determine what should happen after he is killed.

After discussing all of these occurrences, the party set out for Traveler’s Rest. Once their, they discovered that many stores had been robbed, including a caravan. They quickly sussed out those responsible; namely two assassins who were posing as mages through trickery and alchemical potions. One was marking targets while the other would rob said targets. They kept the man calling out marks busy with… well, “fun” activities and found and killed the man doing the robbing. After returning the goods stolen to their rightful owners, and receiving a small cut for their troubles, the party spent the night at the inn (for free, due to the grateful innkeeper) and then set out for their original goal: Fort Inosha

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Diversions

The party set aside their quest to defeat the Dark Mage who had framed them and instead focused on some lighter, less important tasks.

First, the group set out to defeat five trolls and claim their heads, the requirement to join the Fighter’s Guild. During this fight, James, Cyrus’ friend, fell in battle. With party members dying left and right, the Party was even less accepting of newcomers.

Thus, when a woman showed up to help finish the fight and claim the last few minotaur heads, the party wasn’t too trusting. She introduced herself as Erika, but left many other details to the imagination. She offered to help the group in their quests, but kept her reasons secretive.

Upon collecting the heads and joining the Fighter’s Guild, the party then traveled to a nearby grove, looking for Nightshade plants in order to gain entrance to the Mage’s Guild. On their way, the fought against some evil Treants, and found a sinister group of Druids who turned creatures into Treants to do their bidding. Unable to deal with this problem at the moment, the Party remembered the location and left it alone.

The guild required only one sample of nightshade, but the party, acting on Soren’s plan, took two. Then, they took the extra sample back to Cinderhome, and used it as bait to lure out the local black market and destroy it.

Their plan was successful, but they discovered an unpleasant truth. The Dark Mage was behind the Black Market, and had his vile hands in more groups than they had first thought.

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The Death of Stonehold

The party arrived back at the teleporter pads that lead to the Stonehold Keep, but they discovered the pads deactivated and Gillian lying near death on the teleporter. With Cyrus dying in the fight with the Cold Rider, the group was cautious of hiring any new help, and so questioned a person named James. James revealed he was friends with Cyrus, and that he knew someone nearby who could help Gillian.

James and the Party took Gillian back to the nearby Dam, where James found him help. Later, Gillian helped the party into town and informed them of the events of recent past.

Gilliian told the party that everyone in Stonehold Keep was dead. Besides the party, Gillian was certain that he was the only surviving member. Sylvan, Ducante’s weapon, had been taken in the confusion.

Without access to Stonehold’s library, Gillian sent the party after Katil, a famous mage who knew quite a bit about ancient weapons, although Gillian suspected that the weapons were those wielded by the Six long ago. However, Katil would know more.

The party managed to find out that Katil was most likely in Fort Inosha, a military town that would be difficult to enter. While in Cinderhome, the party picked up some entrance quests for two guilds.

With a new lead and new quests under their belt, the party set out for the first time without any hope of help from the Guild.

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The Second Lead

After investigating and solving the mystery of the Invisible House, the party returned to their primary objective: investigating who framed them. The party journeyed to Ginendoa where they had been told a man, named John Smith, lived.

John was a farmer, but apparently he had been the one who had painted the runes in the mayor’s house that had been used to frame them.

They arrived at the house to find John dead and his house being searched by two men.

They interrogated the two men and discovered that they worked for an organization based in a cave nearby. The group got a bit more out of them, and began to suspect that this organization was who framed them. They traveled to the cave and cleared it out of bandits, finding at the back a strange structure.

The structure appeared to be a sort of arena, most likely used for gladiatorial fights. It had long since been abandoned, but the party found footprints in the dust that suggested someone was nearby.

After they entered the large part of the arena where the fights had been held, they were locked in, and the Dark Mage appeared. He attempted to steal their weapons- the Sword of Time and the Polearm of Light, to be specific- and almost made of with them by using a sword that seemed to control ice. However, quick thinking on the part of Logan not only resulted a grievous injury to the Dark Mage but also caused the Mage to only make off with the Sword of Time, leaving the Polearm of Light to the party.

The Dark Mage left and opened a pre-built box that contained a Cold Rider, however not before he tricked the party into accidentally opening a gate for him to enter the guild. One of his minions appeared to have killed Ducante, but the Dark Mage left before they could determine anything specific.

The party made their way with haste back to the guild, worried about what may come next.

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Vengeful Ghosts Part 2

After regaining their balance and discussing their findings, the party began to examine the house. They found it contained multiple traps, such as dishes that caused someone who carried them out of their room to trip and hurt themselves, and moving pillars that lit places on fire.

Splitting the group, the party managed to cover most of the house before finding the amulet that had been mentioned by Daroron in his journal. After taking the amulet, they used the Sword of Time they had found to destroy it, and a man appeared.

The man revealed that he was Ordanor, the god of Darkness, and he had imprisoned himself in the amulet after he had been fatally wounded in order to recuperate. Now that he was out, he thanked the party and rewarded them with what he called the Polearm of Light, a weapon very similar to the Sword of Time.

After doing this Ordanor left, although the party noted that he seemed more happy than they expected the vengeful god of Darkness to be.

Despite this, the party left the house and continued on their journey to investigate their lead.

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Vengeful Ghosts Part 1

The party began their sojourn through the werewolf-infested northern woods of Gideon. They moved quickly, making sure to avoid guards and major cities. However, four hours into their journey, Cyrus experienced one of his episodes and set fire to a tree only a few hundred yards from a guard tower. This forced the party off the road and into the trees far earlier than expected, extending their journey by a day.

On their trip through the woods, the party encountered a strange abandoned campsite where they found a strangely powerful weapon, a flaming, heartseeker long sword. The weapon had a third, possible dangerous, enchantment that mentioned manipulating time. Alethe found a journal mentioning that the group who made the camp was delivering a package- most likely referring to the sword- to Cyacus Towers. The party decided to store the sword in the bag of holding they found it in (of course keeping its abilities secret from their pyromaniac friend Cyrus). Completing this, the party made camp for the night.

While camping, the group was attacked by a low level mage who had a scroll for a powerful summoning spell. The party killed the mage and discovered he carried a letter authorizing a kill contract on the party. The signature was that of the mayor of Fort Inosha.

They arrived at roughly noon in The Keep. The party found the residents of the Keep yelling at the mayor of the town, angry with his inaction on the invisible house. The party immediately offered their aide, helping alleviate the tensions. After listening to the town members, the party began their investigations.

Cyrus, Layla, and Strale traveled to a house that had burned down years ago. They discovered in the basement a summoning circle used to summon a Balor demon. Cyrus also found and translated a journal that suggested the man who performed the ritual had most likely been possessed by a demon. The man called himself Daroron after being possessed. They also found the bodies of children who had been sacrificed to summon the demon.

Alethe and Logan, on the other hand, went to talk to the principal of the school of children who had been taken by the house. Logan went to speak to the principal, who mentioned the children had been talking about an imaginary friend they called Rory. Alethe spoke to the children, who described Rory eeriy similar to the man who was reported to come out of the house. At this point, Logan and Alethe met up and began to follow the children home to keep them safe, with Logan agreeing to meet up with other from the group and discuss their findings. However, the house found them, and Daroron, aka Rory, took them into the house.

Strale, Cyrus, and Layla all exited the basement to find they too were in the house, staring at a mystified Logan and Alethe.

An evil cackle filled their ears as the lights were snuffed out in the house.

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