Dracolich Campaign

Session 1
Approaching Winterhaven and Searching for Douven Staul

The adventure begins as The Downies journey to winterhaven in search of their friend and mentor Douven Staul. He had travelled north to explore rumours of an ancient dragon tomb, but after there had been no word from him for over a month, his wife contacted his old friends and begged that they search him out.

As they approach the town, they are ambushed by a small but vicious group of kobolds, who they successful fend off and defeat. Once in town, they find that these kobold raids are becoming more and more common – esp on the main road, and the towns mayor – Lord Padraige asks them to search out and destroy these reptilian raiders. However The Downies’s primary mission is to find douven, and hence they set off to find the dragon burial site the next morning.

Not far from town, they are set apon by another raiding party of kobolds, this time lead by a wrympriest and seasoned warriors, but The Downies once again prevail. While concerned that they seem to be the target of kobold attacks, the party presses on and eventually finds the dragon tomb.

On arrival, they interrupt the work of a motley bunch of humanoids led by a devious gnome named Agrid. When the party approached, Agrid feigned friendliness and eagerness to share his discovery, but seemed jumpy and agitated when Douven Staul was mentioned. After it became clear that the party didn’t trust him, he ordered his guard drakes and the other bandits to attack. Agrid’s forces nearly overwhelmed the party – especially the vicious guard drakes – but somehow they managed to defeat the enemies after a brutal battle. When they searched the area around the excavation, they found their friend douven chained and gagged in the corner of the pit. After his ordeal, douven swore to give up adventuring and in thanks for his rescue, also gifted the party with his magical amulet. The also discovered a small wooden crate containing an ancient mirror, which the bandits had just uncovered from the tomb.

After searching the tomb for any further treasure they escorted douven back to town. However not far from the burial site the downies were set upon by a kobold strike team, this time including a giant stormclaw scorpion. Using their experience with kobold ambushes, they easily overcame the strike team and were then able to returned to Winterhaven.

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Session 2
Attacking the kobold lair

Following the mayor’s directions to the general vicinity of the kobold lair, the Downies easily followed the many tracks to a clearing below a cliffside waterfall. While this glade look innocent from afar, the faint drone of draconic voices could be heard over the din of the waterfall and the rogue snuck up closer to investigate. No less than 12 kobold warriors stood guard at various ends of the clearing – though many of them looked to be hardly more than younglings with spears. Unfortunately in her excitement to return to the party to give her appraisal, Zoltan stepped on a tree branch, giving away her position. The party then employed plan alpha to great success, and though originally surrounded by greater numbers quite quickly gained control of the battlefield. The kobolds, realising the tide of the battle was turning against them, each tried to break from combat to warn the main encampment, but quick thinking and brutal accuracy mopped up the remaining guards before they could raise the alarm.

After a short rest to regroup, the party then followed the kobold tracks to a the entrance to the lair hidden behind the waterfall. While the foray into the cave initially made progress, the sound of battle drew heavy reinforcements and the party was soon pushed back into the entrance to the cavern. Many of the first wave of kobold soldiers had perished, but they were replaced by more seasoned warriors, a wrympriest flinging orbs of fire and a huge goblin warrior viciously wielding a battleaxe. With both the Nedge and Tiliqua bloodied and surrounded, will they be able to swing the battle once more to their favour?

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Session 3
Kobold Lair - Part 2 and Winterhaven

After early success during the attack on the kobold lair, the fight began turning against the party with the combined weight of numbers, the brutality of the goblin leader, Irontooth and the fiery attacks from the wrympriest taking their toll. While they decimated the kobold forces, the party were unable to harm the mighty goblin leader and were forced to make a tactical retreat. At one stage both the halfling and ranger had been knocked unconscious, but through a mixture of luck and judicious use of healing they managed to escape, though bloodied and battered.

They intended to only rest briefly before striking again at the enemy base while it was still weakened from their first assault, however the return of a kobold scouting party quickly removed that thought from their minds. They easily managed to outpaced the pursuing kobolds and managed to make it safely back to town to rest up before and reassess.

In town they found out that the totally campaign specific ancient mirror was a relic of nerath wizards from the last empire and that the dragon statue that they ‘retrieved’ from a kobold wyrmpriest has an etching of Orcus’s symbol on it. They also negotiated a deal with the Lord Padraige to return to the kobold lair to try to wipe them out and if possible uncover why these kobolds have united under Irontooth the goblin.

In the morning they were awoken with reports that a war party of 6-7 goblins was heading from the north towards the kobold encampment at great speed. Using the fitness of the halfling, the stealth of the drow and the knowledge of the land possessed by the ranger they managed to overtake the goblins and lay an ambush for them. Using the element of surprise they decimated the goblins, and even managed to cow on of the warriors into surrender.

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Session 4
Freeing captives and smashing kobolds

After defeating the goblin war party, the ranger rigorously interrogated the captive goblin about Irontooth and the kobolds. Unfortunately, as a low ranked soldier, he had little information to give about the kobold menace other than that he was sent by Bagron from the Keep to bolster Irontooth’s defences. Neglecting to ask any questions the goblin actually knew anything about (ie the Keep or Bagron), Tiliqua became frustrated with the captive pleading his lack of knowledge and promptly ran him through.

Nedge and Tiliqua then pushed on towards the kobold caves, but before long heard a returning kobold slave party and decided to lay an ambush for them. Led by a dark creeper with a pet guard drake and holding an elf and a dwarf hostage, these kobolds were caught with their guard down by the attack so close to their lair. After a brutal battle, The Downies, supported by the recently freed hostages, managed to slay the dark creeper and his lackeys. The elf, Aguirre, and the dwarf, Reginald, introduced themselves as survivors of a adventuring party that was surprised under the cover of night and were quick to offer their support in the assault on Irontooth’s lair.

Once again The Downies decided to attack through the trees instead of following the heavily guarded river up from the south. However this time the kobold guards were on high alert and were ready for the attack and they quickly swarmed in to attack. The Dwarf was quickly surrounded, but his heavy armour stopped most of the blows and his dangerous hammer took out many a foe. Thirsty for vengeance, Irontooth charged into the fray brutally swinging out with his battle axe, while the wyrmpriest threw vicious orbs of fire into the melee. However after eliminating his kobold allies, the tactical nous of Nedge Snow and the dwarf’s skill with his craghammer made short work of Irontooth. With their leader dead, the remaining kobolds were inspired to fight to the death by the wyrmpriest with the yell of “Fight on, For Kalarel and Lord Orcus!”

After the battle, the downies searched Irontooth and his allies and found that the goblin had a large tattoo of a skeletal rams head on his arm and a pouch containing a small silver key and a message scroll from Kalarel. This key opened a small wooden treasure chest in Irontooth’s quarters which contained several bags of gold (420gp total) and a set of fine dwarven chain mail.

Where the drow was for all this, no one is quite sure. She was last sighted just after the battle with the goblins and it was just assumed that she had gone ahead to scout and never came back. Realistically, she was probably busy trying to seduce an underage goblin/kobold/anything and everything ran significantly smoother in her absence anyway.

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Session 5
Discovery of Sunny Dale Keep

Having smashed the remnants of the Kobold threat the Downies headed back to Winterhaven to get their just rewards and, having had the still oozing head of Irontooth dumped on his desk by Tiliqua, the major was only to happy to pay the party as promised. When asked about the Keep that the Goblin reinforcement had babbled about under inept interrogation he would only say that there had been rumours of Goblin activity for some time but due to a lack of resources the town had been unable to do anything about them. Aguirre immediately offered to clean this threat to the town from the world and Tiliqua was quick to second this idea, only he also attached a precondition of being well paid for his services. When the the major pleaded poverty, insisting that the town couldn’t afford to endlessly employ mercenaries to save it from the activities of monsters near by, Tiliqua began to mutter that perhaps the town would rather be food for the undead servants of Orcus. Aguirre quickly interrupted him though dragging him, and the rest of the party, from the room.

The Downies then headed to (Voltron) the Sage’s tower. Voltron greeted the downies with news that his research had uncovered the real reason why Cassan’s Keep had been built – to defend the area against a rift connecting this worked to the shadowfell. This rift apparently connects to an unholy sanctuary dedicated to Orcus, and if reopened a tide of undead would flood the area. The Downies then confirmed his fears, telling him of kalarel’s plans to open the rift. Voltron then pleaded with the Downies to investigate this threat, offering assistance in the form of gold and healing poitions.

After a nights rest the Downies made their way to the Keep. The surrounding area was almost plastered with evidence of Goblins and when Tiliqua crept into the entrance to investigate he found a single goblin guard watching the hallway. Knowing Zoltan he thought he would probably get in trouble for not giving her a crack at him first up, especially since he had already been flashing his tits at Nedgeas they approached the Keep. Surprisingly though she actually aided Tiliqua in his surprise attacks on the guard, rather then offering him a blow job, but then chose to charge into the room and promptly fell into a pit trap. Tiliqua then showed the rest of the party his impression of a pincushion, as the roused goblin guards only had one visible target. Zoltan eventually managed to drag herself from the pit, but was closely followed by a swarm of rats, which proved the most serious threat to the dwarf since he joined the party. With the tide of battle turning against them, the goblin guards began to flee, but quick thinking from the drow managed to immobilize one with a kobold glue pot, and the elf’s glaive made easy work of the remaining goblin.

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Session 6
Exploring Cassan's Keep

After finishing off the goblin guards, the party took a quick rest before heading down the passageway the goblins had been fleeing to. Entering a room that looked more like an excavation site, they were confronted by several goblins digging for treasure accompanied by dangerous guard drakes. The wooden walkways proved to be more than a match for both the Downies and the goblins, and quickly the battle became a brutal melee. Taking dubious tactical advice from the elf, Zoltan tried to dash past a guard drake to deliver a telling blow, but was brutally savaged by the drake and its crossbow wielding allies. Revived by powerful healing magic, the drow lashed out at the drake blinded by the desire for revenge, only to be beaten into unconsciousness once again. While the drow drifted in and out of consciousness with the help of healing magic and goblin crossbow bolts, the rest of the party easily mopped up the remaining enemies.

Finding this room to be a dead end, the Downies then returned to the entrance hall and tried the opposite corridor. When the passageway opened up into a small room, Goblin voices could clearly be heard coming from the far door. When one of the party stumbled while sneaking up to the door, the goblins conversation turned to “Splugg” and how they weren’t ready to stop torturing him yet. With the element of surprise gone, the Downies burst into the room to be confronted with a ghastly torture chamber run by a masked hobgoblin. Focusing all their firepower on one enemy at a time had a devastating effect on the enemy forces, especially the torturer how was bizarrely only armed with a red hot poker. However this also allowed a goblin sharpshooter to cut and run when the battle seemed lost. The drow, still battered from the previous encounter, was lying in wait and managed to mortally wound the goblin, but not before it had raised the alarm for the rest of the lair…

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Session 7
Attacking the Goblin Lair & an undead ambush

Facing a horde of goblin cutters and skirmishers, the Downies formed a defensive wall with the elf, and dwarf dealing with the frontline and the ranger and rogue sniping from the rear. Once again the goblins were no match for the might of Lord Salisbury’s hammer and, bolstered by the healing power of Aguirre, the Downies quickly decimated the goblin forces. Fearing the goblin leader would realise the battle was lost and withdraw to regroup his forces, Zoltan unleashed a vicious barrage of daggers against Bagron, weakening and hobbling him. The Dwarf then charged towards the goblin leader, smashing the remaining bodyguards away with a blow from his shield, and mortally wounding Bagron with a crushing blow from his hammer. With their leader dead, the resolve of the remaining goblins was broken and they were easily defeated even as they tried to flee.

One warrior was taken prisoner and taken to the torture chamber for interrogation. While the drow took pleasure in tying the captive up on the rack, the others quickly searched the goblin lair finding some treasure as well as a goblin prisoner named Splugg who was locked in the cells. By interrogating surrendered goblin and Splugg in turn, the Downies found that balgron answered to a tribe of hobgoblins who controlled the remainder of the Keep. The goblin warrior was killed once he had outlived his usefulness and, despite his offers to act as the party’s servant and guide, Splugg was left to rot in his cell.

The Downies then set up camp in the entrance hallway so ensure no one could escape the Keep without their notice, but were awoken shortly after when the dwarf , acting as sentry, spotted Nirian, the elf hunter, entering the keep. Nirian explained that she had been sent by the town guard to request the party’s help – apparently the town had been attacked by cultists in their absence. Despite their suspicions about the elf hunter, the peril of the town could not be ignored and they reluctantly followed her back to town. Nirian convinced them to they need to approach from the rear to avoid the cultists attacking the city, but as they passed the cemetery she bolted inside and the Downies were forced to give chase. Foul necromantic rituals had awoken the dead, and under Nirian’s command they rose and attacked the party when it entered the cemetery gates. While the rest of the party battled against a pair of gravehounds, Aguirre fearlessly charged off to confront his kin, only to find himself surrounded by skeletal warriors. The Cleric of Kord proved his strength in battle as he single-handedly took on the horde of undead and their elven leader, and by the time the rest of the party join him the battle was all but over. A swift strike with the shaft of the glaive knocked the hunter out, and she was quickly tied up and the necrotic circle which powered the undead was disabled.

Searching Nirian’s possessions, they found a note from Kalarel ordering their deaths and giving details on awaken the undead using foul rituals. The Downies then roused the elf and attempted to interrogate her about kalarel’s plans, however her faith in, or perhaps fear of, orcus strengthened her resolve and she would offer no information other than that orucus’s will would soon be done. Aguirre, tiring of her assertion that she had no fear in death, threw Nirian into a coffin so she could sweat on the concept of death until the town guard came to arrest her.

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Session 8
Into the Darkness

Having informed Voltron that they had left Nirian half buried in the graveyard the Downies headed back to the Keep. The first level of the ruins cleared they moved to the top of the stairs to the lower levels of the Keep. Met with impenetrable darkness below they sent the Drow, with her remarkable darkvision hones from years in the underdark, to scout ahead. At the base of the stairs she discovered a room full of Zombies and having checked around a small distance more and finding nothing she returned to get the rest of the party. Thanks to the divine powers of Aguirre they quickly and painlessly dispatched the lowly brain eaters and continued further into the darkness. Scouting around They found a series of passages marked by collections of rune carvings which they were unable to decipher. However when the eternal truth that elf clerics can’t jump was once again proved true followed by an equal failure from the Drow, they quickly discovered the purpose of these runes – setting off a howling banshee trap that sent the elves running in terror from the scary scary floor. This left Tiliqua alone to stand bravely and face the onslaught of a second wave of Zombies. When his companions realised that they really weren’t brave Sir Robin of Browntrousers though they quickly rejoined the fight and again the mindless undead were almost effortlessly dispatched.

As they continued deeper into darkness the ranger’s sharp eyes spotted an anomaly in the stone work of the wall, realising at once that it was a secret door Tiliqua pointed it out to the Drow who deftly opened it. Beyond was a tiny bare room, but from the far wall came a faint and all too familiar shuffling sound. Realising that all was not as it appeared the Downies plunged through the illusion of the wall finding themselves in a hidden armoury filled, thanks to the powers of Narrativium (otherwise known as the maligned influence of the corrupt rift to the shadowfell), with another pack of Zombies. In an almost comical display however the Zombie almost completely failed to remember their fundamental role in the universe, to eat brains, and managed to only make a single opportunity attack between them before being ruthlessly torn apart by the Downies’ ferocious assault. Not seeing the need to answer simple and quite irrelevant riddles at this point the party pillaged the bejesus out of the hidden treasures, finding a fuck load of cool shit, before continuing on.

Finding another stair deeper into the earth they opted to turn around and ensure not to leave any monsters behind to cut off a possible retreat. They came upon a a strangely Christian church (all I’m saying is why would the church be built in the shape of a crucifix?) to the Dragon god Bahamut, its walls lined with sarcophagi from which emanated faint scratching sounds. Knowing exactly what was bound to happen, the party progressed into the chapel and completely failed to be surprised by the sudden appearance of of packs of skeletons. Again, thanks to Aguirre’s Divine might, the undead were efficiently clean up and they moved on into the tomb at the rear of the chapel. Here a skeletal figure dressed in plate mail, that for some reason that was completely not metagaming the party decided not to destroy on sight, told them that he was Sir Keegan who had been charged with protecting the rift under Sunnydale Keep, but had instead been driven mad by it and wound up killing everyone and so he lingered tormented by his failure. After proving their honorable intent to him the Downies were given his magic longsword to aid them in cleansing the vileness from the place. On Sir Keegan’s advice, they searched the alters to Bahamut and found More Dragon Statuesbefore they then continued back to the stairs deeper into the ruins…

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Session 9
Fighting through the hobgoblin guards...

Scouting ahead once again, the Drow found the bottom of the stairwell guarded by goblinoid sentries. After much debate, the Downies decieded to try the password contained in nirian’s note – however this turned out to be a fake and they were soon swarmed by hobgoblin warriors. Again the elf’s divine might had an immediate impact on the battle clearing out most of the grunts, but the remaining soldiers formed a defensive wall that the Downies were unable to break through. The remaining grunts released a deathjump spider from its cage (which quickly used its speed and prodigious leap to flanked the party) and then one ran to alert Kalarel. However quick thinking by Aguirre stopped the messenger in its tracks, and the ranger quickly and brutally dealt with the arachnid threat. As the dwarf soaked up the hobgoblin soldiers best efforts, the last grunt tried to flee, however he was unable to avoid the drow’s keen aim with the dagger and the rest of the guards where finished off without raising the alarm.

Moving further into the Keep, Zoltan was surprised when a creaking door alerted a hobgoblin minion and soon the Downies found themselves attacking a large hobgoblin force lead by a wizened warcaster. Lord Salisbury fearlessly charged the hobgoblin line, opening up a gaping hole and then turning his attention on the warcaster leading the troops. Tiliqua then took advantage of this opening to fire a brutal barrage of tratnyrs , felling the warcaster instantly. Without their leader the hobgoblins did not prove to be a major challenge, and the Downies where soon moping up the last of the resistance.

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Session 10
Not-the-Warchief and Suspicious Statue-traps

The Downies continued to move through the hobgoblin infested complex, this time with Tiliqua scouting ahead. Unfortunately the ranger, intently focussed on moving silently up the corridor, tripped a portcullis whose clanging descent ruined any possible element of surprise. Once the Downies managed to lift and disable this obstacle, they moved into a large chamber dominated by a massive oaken table scarred with burns and dagger cuts. Several parchments were skewered into the table with wicked looking daggers, but before the Downies had a chance to investigate, two doors swung open and the room filled with hobgoblin warcrys. As the Warchief, an imposing hobgoblin soldier, roared demands to keep some alive to sell to the Bloodreavers as slaves, the hobgoblin warriors used the element of surprise to surrounded the party and quickly had them on the back foot. A blast of lighting breath from the dragonborn decimated the lesser fighters and slightly evened up the odds, but the more disciplined and bettered armoured soldiers were proving much tougher opponents. Determined to remove the warcaster from the fight, Aguirre threw everything at the hobgoblin wizard, but his single-minded focus was to be his downfall. A soldier took advantage of the elf’s slip in concentration and felled him with a brutal flail attack. The cleric was not out of the fight for long though, as Tiliqua was quickly fed the unconscious elf a potion of healing before finishing the job on the warcaster. The hobgoblins continued to fight bravely until the Warchief fell to the dwarf’s vicious hammer blows, but by then Aguirre and Tiliqua had all avenues of escape covered and the battle was quickly ended.

Upon searching the Warchief’s council room, the Downies found maps and battle plans detailing an attack on Winterhaven from a combined force of goblinoids and undead. Lord Salisbury also managed to find several bottles of quite valuable red wine – much to his joy – and a chest in the Warchief’s bedroom contained a fine black cloak covered in thin, red vein-like lines as well as a small cache of gold.

As they moved deeper into the complex away from the hobgoblins lair the corridors were no longer lit by regular torches, and soon they came upon a sizeable room with two sets of doors. Choosing to continue heading south through the large double doors, the light from their sunrod revealed a room looking vaguely like a memorial. A towering statue of a warrior in plate armour holding a massive sword dominated the centre of the room while on the eastern wall two crouching dragon statues seemed to watch over proceedings. The only exit from the room was a set of double doors situated in an alcove in the southern wall, which also contained 4 statues of small cherubic creatures holding water vases. Ever suspicious, Aguirre decided to skirt the edge of the room to reach the far doors. However as he reached the cherub statues and began to examine them, Tiliqua decided to move further into the room to cover the elf in case of trouble, and in doing so set off the first statue trap. The giant stone warrior sprung to life, sweeping his huge sword across the room and smashing the ranger to the ground. Lord Salisbury quickly dragged the tiliqua back out of harms way, and following the elf’s lead, they also took care to follow the edge of the room an avoid the stone titan’s reach. As Aguirre stepped into the middle of the cherub statues to reach the doors, another trap was activated, sealing the elf in as the alcove began to fill with churning water. Realising the cherubs need to be destroyed to free the elf, the Downies went to work, chipping away at the stone with weapons and spells. However this in turn set off the dragon statues, who fired off blasts of force whenever Tiliqua and Salisbury attacked the cherubs. Eventually they managed to free Aguirre from his whirlpool prison, but not before the dragon and titan statues managed to cause a significant amount of trouble for the Downies, and the Lord Salisbury in particular…

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