Birthright - 4th Edition

Maybe next time they'll listen!

OOC Note:
J.R. is cool with how things went down, and would have been even if his character had died. (In fact he was already thinking of new concepts). Tholecht on the other hand is not. Keep that in mind when reading this.

BEGIN RANT
Its getting harder and harder to find good minions these days!

Seriously, you would think they could follow simple instructions. Our sturdiest fighters spent forever dealing with one puny wererat while the rest of us went to save the gol… err… citizens. Two hits and I would have finished him off, but since Kahles was too stubborn to go to the surface I had to do it instead. If I hadn’t there wouldn’t have been any citizens left to save! (I’m still not sure why our wizard was so obsessed with the ducks… but I can’t complain she is the only one who got more kills than I.)

At least Drew realized the urgency, and when they finally finished off their defenseless rat he booked it topside. As soon as we had people capable of taking a hit we quickly finished them off. (and I admit it, I can only take so much abuse!)

Maybe next time they’ll listen!
END RANT

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Righteous Fury

We went to the Cracked Flagon searching for a lead on Gus. The Flagon is the local rathole and is roughly on par with the Voz prison. We made it be known we were looking to talk to him, and that we would be at a local inn for him to reach us. Evzon was quite generous in his tipping for the info, and we didn’t press too hard.

The next night they drugged the patrons and burnt down the inn we were staying at. I wish I could say this was a surprise, I expected them to try something or confront us, but this goes far beyond what is honerable even for thieves!

The time for talk is done, I could forgive them for sending an assassin, thats just good practice, but when they put so many innocents at risk they crossed the line.

“Drew, kick the door in…”

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A swift farewell

Well that was fun… Evzen’s long lost partner in crime Gabriella told the watch that the stone was stolen.
Granted I use the term “watch” loosely, they were a collection of thugs led by a bigger thug.
Fortunately she didn’t mean to screw us over, so she helped once she recognized him.

To put it simply, fight fight fight, run run run.

It seems like as soon as one of our party got away, someone else turned around to dive back into the fray.
We need to work on this whole “strategic retreat” thing.

Evzen was the star of the show… At least if it was a comedy. Sending the horse drawn carriage down the street was pretty impressive. Diving in front of a sword blow to save his friend who causes us all this trouble on the other hand was not.

Eventually we got enough distance we could make a break for the docks. By this point I know these streets well, and what makes the people tick. I caused a panic as a smoke screen for us. Evzen found us some short cuts that we could slip through… Jumping over carts and the like. Drew, well he played with &*%. Literally. A cart of dung is an effective deterrant.

Finally the docks were in sight, and a ship was leaving port… Drew and Gabriella cleared the distance with ease (possibly because he tossed her). Kahles and I made a splash… I’m not a jumped and he weights a ton. Fortunately, after causing so much trouble in escaping, Evzen earned his keep by shadowstepping us out of the water and onto the deck of our favorite trader’s ship…

Sigh
I liked that inn…

Now Evzen, hurry up and tell us what the blasted stone is!
(And write next sessions summery!)

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A kicked down door is a fine way to start a morning

After an unproductive fall, largely due to our bard researching his Varsk rather than the rock, we decided to spend another season in Khinasi. Realizing there was little we could contribute towards the research, Drew and I worked to improve our finances. Our trade investments went reasonably well this season, and the odd jobs we took paid quite satisfactory.

Evzen and Kahles remained at the temple to research the heralds and the identify ritual to attempt to get more information on the rock (which I bet is egg of some sort) magically. Unfortunately rumors spread so they no longer felt safe researching at the temple. We decided to perform the ritual at my lodgings instead, with everyone except me participating while I stood watch. (I’m not going to let magic touch me again!)

Things seemed to be going well, or at least it was fairly boring so I assume it was going well when all of a sudden Evzen screamed out “Visions through time!” and fainted. Shortly after we roused him and he excitedly said “Hey guys, I know what this is!” the door was kicked in and now we have to deal with some petty thugs before we find out what he learned…

Sighing Tholecht draws his crossbow and aims at the door

OOC: I probably misremebered what he said. Feel free to update as appropriate. Otherwise I’ll try to remember to check my notes and update it tonight

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Farewell to the frozen North

At last! We are leaving this frozen waste. Our reputation has earned us the undying loyalty of a local trader and he will be proving us passage South. We also pooled our funds to invest in the silver trade, we don’t expect much payout from this (10%), but its safer than carrying our gold with us. Evzen did have to borrow from myself and Drew to pay his share, but that’s because he couldn’t resist purchasing a baby Varsk. In fact he is hiding by a pile of meat tending to his lizard right now.

Our initial destination is a shipyard in an island off the Southern coast. We plan on arranging passage to the mainland from there to do a bit of research on the magical rock we obtained as well as to seek out profit through adventure.

The debate continues on as to whether we are focusing on saving the world or profiting, though it seems like we are currently leaning towards the former. Regardless I am sure the Cold Steel Initiative will further spread its fame!

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Majid's Fine Curiosities
A letter to Southern Anuire Shipping and Imports

To Fairfield Regional Head,
Southern Anuire Shipping and Imports

I am sorry to have taken so long to send out this missive of introduction and greeting, must my fellows and I have been very busy getting our affairs in order and setting up shop as it were (you may have noticed the new church of Cuiraécen founded by Father Kenrik, the additional guard force trained by my friend Javiero, or my own small shop Majid’s Fine Curiosities). We decided on Fairfield due to our pleasant past dealings, and our ongoing friendship with Baronet Bloodwater. Overall, the city has been quite welcoming to my new venture… save for the Spider River Trading Company. They have fought me at every turn, even going so far as to send thugs to burn down my fledgling shop! I can only hope that they soon turn to minding their own business, as I have it on good authority that they have over-extended a bit in their efforts to keep me from gaining a foothold. If only I were in a position to capitalize on this oversight…

Anyways, I just wanted to introduce myself to the other honest merchant in the area in hopes that we may have happy and lucritive dealings in the future.

-Majid
of Majid’s Fine Curiosities

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Parting is such sweet sorrow...
...especially when its at knife point

This will be short for I am too overwhelmed by my thoughts. The fates are conspiring against my future happiness! Things went from bad to worse fairly quickly (once the hallway ended). First we explained why we slaughtered the goblins. That wasn’t too bad, it meant the wererat and Althion had to cook instead.

Then Morga left the room to tend to some business, I went along since it meant we would get time alone together. Unfortunately that business was to talk with her brother. You wouldn’t expect this to be a problem, except her brother was the ice monster we slaughtered earlier… Needless to say she didn’t take this well, and unfortunately she had the magics to find out who did it. We had a bit of a spat, and I had no choice but to defend myself… Though self defense is something I’m good at, I couldn’t bring myself to deliver the killing blow…

All in all, I allowed Morga to escape and the rest of the team couldn’t stop the rat. (Maybe I should hire goblins as well?) We did get Yuri the eldar though and are now bringing him back to town. It also seems that Morga still believes we are working as agents of the Kracken, no clue what the wererat thinks.

The party consensus seems to be getting a ship and finally going someplace where there actually is civilization! I look forward to leaving the icy north behind… It will let me escape some of this sadness…

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Liriel's diary - Seventh entry

It has perhaps been the longest few days in my two centuries of life.

Galloway ordered us to lead the left flank of the attack into Rhuobhe. Govannon was to command the forces assembled there and the men were jokingly calling us “Govannon’s Six”. Each of us paired off with a force battalion of men numbering in the hundreds. Miri and I were to lead one of the faster moving battalions while the others worked from the back to better plan for the chaos of the coming battle. When all our forces were prepared, we met the army of Ghealles on a rolling plain by the edge of the forest. The armies sized each other up and the generals stared at each other from across the plain. It was then that we got a good look at the elven general. The others wondered who might lead the army of the Manslayer…but the golden hair and the familiar way he held himself could only belong to Ceallach. My father led the army against us.

A pitched battle was fought. Men and horses died around us and at times the rain of Sidhelein arrows seemed to be unending. Battalions on both sides broke ranks, but our middle held. Five Sidhelein heroes were captured. Their forces were routed and their final remaining battalion threw down their weapons in resignation that they either surrender or be butchered by a superior force. Though some of the battalions were badly wounded, we didn’t loose a single squad.

Govannon gathered our forces to celebrate, but we were quickly joined by Galloway. The other fronts succeeded in their own assaults and he wished for us to accompany him in his vanguard.

We were to ride into the very heart of Rhuobhe and take the fight to the Ghealles themselves.

The way was long and we were ambushed by Sidhelein bladesingers in what the humans describes as an unnaturally heavy mist. We became separated in the mist and the bladesingers used our confusion to their advantage. It has been a long time since I fought any from the school of the Striking Serpent. We eventually beat them back taking a single prisoner. He proved to be uncooperative and when he found out who I was…I will only say that Ceallach told them about his “dead daughter” and that prisoner was dispatched of quickly and brutally.

We moved on to an ancient elven city in the heart of the forest. The army began to sack the city while Kenrik directed them not to burn down the forest and city around us. I tried to get the remaining Sidhelein to run, but alas some were lost. Our looting of the city was thorough. We were about to move on when we heard a voice from above us in the walk ways between the tree houses. Tall, menacing, and with a mane of black hair; Rhuobhe Manslayer stood above us and mockingly called to parlay with Galloway.

We looked at apprehensively at each other for a moment as Galloway climbed the ladder to the walkways above. We followed behind him quickly.

The Manslayer and Galloway talked as if they were the only two there; referencing something that happened far in Galloway’s past. Galloway, caught of guard, demanded to know how the Manslayer knew so much about him. Something about him slaying a dragon.

We watched the coterie around the Manslayer tensely and waiting for them to act on some unseen signal. Eoindeln stood among those gathered against us. Galloway drew his sword and told us that the elven wizard held a book and we should get it and get out as fast as possible. Rhuobhe drew his twin longswords made from a matte silver metal. Chaos erupted around us.

Miri led the charge against the elven guards and we tried to focus our magics and attacks to the wizard and those guarding her. Eoindeln covertly tried to help us, or at least not harm us in our attempts to battle the Manslayer’s guards. We quickly outmatched and started to realize how bad things were going for us. Majid tried to heal Galloway’s wounds, but they smoked and burned rather than healing. The onslaught became to much and Charles Galloway fell before the Manslayer. Just as the Manslayer was about to deliver the killing blow, Galloway shifted slightly and chose rather to fall to his death. Enraged, the Manslayer turned on us. I stepped forward to try to give the others enough time to grab the book and get out of the city. Rhuobhe looked down at me and said that my father would be happy to know I died fighting against the cause. The wounds from the Manslayer’s swords were like nothing I had encountered. It was as if I could feel my life ebbing from my body. As everyone else disappeared into the surrounding forest, I made a break for the edge of the woods. I knew that I would not be able to make it in time, but a parting arrow in my back knocked me into the cover of the forest were I was able to meet up with the group.

Wounded in both body and pride, we limped back to the army’s encampment. The rest of the men burned and looting in their retreat headless of their safety or ours. We arrived back to the encampment dodging questions from the senior staff. We met in Galloway’s tent and started to pour over the book we risked out lives for as well as Captain Galloway’s personal log and diary.

We looked to each other with a sense of sadness and apprehension.

Charles Galloway, famed mercenary captain,our employer and friend was dead.

What now?

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Liriel's diary - Sixth entry

We returned from our battle in the rat warren and were immediately ushered to a private audience with Galloway. None of wanted to talk about the disgusting rat king, which turned out to be a ugly tangle of dire rats of an Awnsheghlien or anything we faced. The battle was over and we were more than content to dream of the vast wealth we found in the warren and how we were going to spend it. Our dreams were cut short, however. The job I’d been dreading was now at our doorstep. With not one, but two employers, we were slated to engage the collected forces of the Manslayer and preemptively wipes of the threat of a legion Ghealles.

We do not have much time to prepare. The war machine is churning and the rest of the mercenaries have been making their last arrangements.

Fiara, I’m leaving this book with you in the hope that you will merely be safeguarding it for me while we are successful. Sometimes life doesn’t always work out the way we plan and sometimes life isn’t fair.

I’m leaving you my spare longsword and a map I stole from the rest of the group. The map and the coin that I found in the cabin where I met your father long ago might hold the answers you seek. You are a scion of Masela, you are Sidhelien, and most of all you are loved. Never for a moment doubt that you are not in control of your senses. You have always made me proud.

In the event I fall in battle, seek your grandmother and great-uncle in the Elvenmere and let them know what befell. They will help you and they love you as much as I do.

Sometimes I wonder if my father and I never got along because we were so alike and all my sins he saw himself commit. It was never you he hated. It was me. And I mean to bring Ceallach Aurethrin home. Whether I drag him home alive or dead is up to him.

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Endless hallway...

Their footsteps echoed down the hallway…
Tholecht didn’t remember the path to the dining room being this long, it felt as if it would take at least three weeks to traverse the distance.
On the bright side it allowed plenty of time to devise an explanation for the room full of goblins they slaughtered…
Now if only he could stop staring at the sway of Morga’s hips as she walked and THINK

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