The Sans Arcana

Cabin in the Woods
The first steps

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The five of you are a small cottage in the foothills of the Northern Mountain ranges, three days ride from the closest hamlet. You were each summoned here four days ago and now sit in a room with the ambassador of the Kingdom Trystan, heart of the empire,
You have only been together a short time, though some longer than others.

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Tragedy bred of treachery
A grizzly beginning leads to earthshaking secrets

Oct 20 th, Cabin Fervor

The party meets Leonard Baloren, half a day’s travel from the hamlet of Melville. They are tasked with investigating the tragedy at Middleton. Their employer believes that the culprits are either the kingdom of Delanoric, trying to kick start the war they have always hungered for, or the bloodthirsty orcs of Clan Bloodfist. They are not to mention their affiliation with Trystan and will be compensated based on how much evidence they can provide or nobles they can return. The party is provided with lodgings and horses at the Sickle and Spade Inn, in Melville .
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The party faces a rowdy and drunk group of thugs assuming to take advantage of the party’s perceived prosperity. The hooligans learn their lesson at great personal cost. The party spares Kevin and Kevin at the bequest of the innkeeper.

Treasure Gained: 3 gp each (Leo keeps track of his own)
Rations consumed: 0 days, thank you, Baloren!

Oct 21 st, Bearing down on Middleton

The party comes across 2 adorable bear cubs and their surly parents. Amidst the chaos of frightened steeds and raging ursine, the adventurers are left no choice but to slay the bears. In an act of mercy Keled and Gorbub euthanize the orphaned cubs.

Treasure Gained: 2 days rations each
Rations Consumed: 1 days

Oct 22 nd, Well this is Orcward

The party decides to ride passed Thistledown and continue towards Middleton. They make camp but are awoken from their sleep by a group of orcs. The orcs claim to be lost and seem truthful, the party sends them on their way back towards the border.

Treasure Gained: 0 gp
Rations Consumed: 1 days

Oct 23 rd, Orc in the Road to Middleton

The previous night’s mercy appears a poor decision as the party comes upon the dead body of what appears to be a traveling gnome performer. Following smoke the party charges into battle with the orc band they had let live, now feasting on a troupe of entertainers. The battle is a rout though Falco is given a scare when a mighty javelin toss heaves him from his saddle.

The adventures continue on to Middleton and arrive late in the evening to two Knight Captains arguing: Randall Hurk of Trystan and Zandar Thrornic of Delanoric. Choosing not to get involved the party organizes camp and Woulf begins his meticulous investigation. He follows drag marks to find a drawing made in one of the dead orc’s final moments.
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Treasure Gained: 10 gp each
Rations Consumed: 1 Days

Oct 24 th – 25 th, Track and Fields

Following tracks off into Bloodfist lands, the party ponders why humanoids and orcs would be travelling together. Noticing that they have acquired a shadow the party lays a trap. Unfortunately their pursuer does not take the bait and after a frantic but brief search to find a missing Leo (who fell asleep in hiding), the party gets a late start to resting and even later start to the next day.

Treasure Gained: 0 gp
Rations Consumed: 2 days

Oct 26 th, When Luck needs a Shower

The party follows a path that veers away from the main path to find that they were not the only ones contracted by Trystan to investigate the Middleton Massacre. Their predecessors fared none to well but did provide the resident 6’7" knight with a pair of studded leather sleeping pajamas. There was also a marking on a tree quite similar to the one they found in Middleton of the ominous orc figure.

Continuing on they spot 2 sentries along a ridge line. One orc, one human in red. Leo scouts ahead, passed the sentries and a half mile to a cave mouth with 6 more enemies. Satisfied with his reconnaissance he narrowly avoids detection with the help of a smelly stranger.

The party elects to use surprise to their advantage and attack the sentries from range. They are noticed and are only able to drop the orc before the human takes off for the camp. Upon reaching the ridgeline they find the stranger has returned and dispatched the errant soldier. He beckons them to delay their folly and join him at his camp.
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The man’s name is Harren. His story is full of grief and tragedy and his eyes often drift off into a distance unknown. He is not of completely sound mind but one thing is for sure, his hunger for murdering orcs. Even still he tries to dissuade the adventurers of their plans warning them of the death they invite. He leaves.

The adventurers, despite the warning, are unwilling to waste whatever advantage they have and set up the same trap they had failed to execute the previous night. This time it works. The orc and human host begin to investigate and attack. The battle is bloody and Keled, Gorbub, and Falco take hard hits while Woulf and Leo assassinate from range.

The tide of battle seemed to take a turn for the worst when a massive half-orc appeared from the caves. Fortunately, the new imposing combatant’s rage was met with equal fury from Harren who attacked while rebuking the adventurer’s foolhardy decision. The battle is concluded and the two dwarf prisoners unbound.

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The brothers are well known councilors from the The Free Cities, Thordic and Holdren Ironcast. They inform the party that they were captured in Middleton. The attack consisted mostly of orcs grappling in through the windows, as Woulf had surmised, and that although they have seen Delanoric soldiers around that they were confused about their involvement as there were Delanoric soldiers who perished at Middleton as well. holdren.jpg The brothers were kept alive to help start mining operations here. This could explain Delanoric’s presence as the kingdom has so far been forced to trade with the Dwarven races as they have no source of mining within their own borders. There are more mining operations down south as far as they had heard. The inform the adventurers that there is a Trystan noble in the mine and that surely most of the enemy had been just defeated in that last skirmish.

The party descends into the mine shaft. Leo sneaks up with his darkvision and spots a soldier accosting a bound Trystan noble. The party charges in. With multiple people on the brink of death the enemy, discovered to be Samuel Foxworth, Knight of house Badgerborn of the Kingdom of Delanoric, is finally slain.

The prisoner with a sideways smile of defiance introduces himself as Justin Felwick. felwick.jpg He shares with the party a mind-blowing revelation; Hulrick is alive! He claims he heard his captors mention Buldrek, a town closer to Black Death Keep. Furthermore, and much to the citizens of The Free Cities, Delanoric agreed to vacate the border forts between the Bloodlands and The Free Cities in exchange for the rich mines in the western Bloodlands.

Stunned, the party rests before setting off on the arduous journey back

Treasure Gained: 55 gp each, Foxworth’s sigil ring. Keled gains plate armor and studded leather armor
Rations Consumed: 1 days

Oct 27 th – 29 th, The meaning of haste

Uneventful. The party rushes back to Middleton while Harren and the Ironcast brothers make haste back to The Free Cities.

Treasure Gained: 0 gp
Rations Consumed: 3 days

Oct 30 th, The more you know…

Upon arriving in Middleton there is a noticeable increase in the Delanoric presence. The party’s arrival does not make waves at first. Gorbub stands guard outside the Trystan tent while the others return the noble and gather the rewards. A rider is sent out with the fastest horse and tents are being quickly packed. The tension in the air grows. The freed noble thanks the party but urges them to leave before what happens next. Concerned for the retainers, instructed to hold up in Grosston, the party sets out. Behind them the see the battle begin with the slaughter of the outnumbered Trystans. The ride to Grosston, deeper into Delanoric territory, knowing that they are some of the very few that know the depth of the betrayals and the truth that Hulric lives as a prisoner of the Bloodfist.

Treasure Gained: 500 gp each
Rations Consumed: 0 days (yet)

Rewards Summary

Total Gold Gained: 568 gp each
Total Rations Consumed: 9 days.
Other Treasure: Riding Horse, +2 days Rations, Foxworth Sigil Ring, Trystan Contract from deceased party
Experience: 1020 xp

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A Time of Troubles
Session 1 Prologue

After coming to a vague agreement of your next moves the party went about the day to day tasks of an adventuring group – Some of you slept for a few hours, some made their way to the bar and others went into the town to visit the blacksmith and the general store. (Anything in the PHB is available here, you are able to buy those items. If you want to attempt to barter, don’t deduct your gold yet and we can do a skill check when we first get together – But equip your characters with whatever items you intend to buy) the only issue was getting the blacksmith to make adjustments to Keled’s new armor and bartering with the man who owned the carriage at the Inn, It would take another day or so to accomplish these so the group settled in for the night.
Something wasn’t right. You chose to sleep at 50% (Half the party on watch, half the party asleep) From the window in your large room (You essentially rented out one of their common rooms for your entire party, including retainers) you saw torches approaching the town all throughout the night. Small groups of people started coming in, trail worn and weary and carrying as much as their bodies and horses could hold. More often than not, through your shift that night, your hands found themselves resting on the hilts of your weapons, on gripping the fetching of an arrow or bolt.
Morning came and with it so had a new world. Your group stepped outside and saw dozens, maybe even hundreds of trail wore travelers of all races huddled in groups around their gear and supplies. After talking to a few of them and some of the patrons in the Inn you found out these were refugees from the Free-Cities. Just as you were made aware of this information a column of Delanoric soldiers rode into the small town, and at the head of the column rode Zandar Thornic, The Knight Captain you had seen when you first came to Middleton. As if to fit the mood the skies opened up and the rain began to fall.
It was a blur. The soldiers began corralling the refugees. From the supply train of the column of soldiers came posts and boards. a makeshift wall was erected, the refugees that resisted were publicly beaten, dragged into the streets, whipped and pummeled. Within just a few hours Grossden went from a quaint town to an internment camp. The streets, once packed dirt turned into thick mud, everywhere, footing was hard to find and the mud was tracked into every building.
You felt relatively safe, throughout this whole process no one had come to your group or threatened you in anyway. You did overhear one of the soldiers ask the Inn keeper about you, but he hold them you had come from a town, Blineth, further in the south and had been caravan guards for the mayor of that town who had passed through. After the soldier seemed satisfied with that answer and left, the Inn Keeper offered Keled a knowing smile and nod, but you got the impression that his debt to you had just been paid and he wouldn’t be sticking his neck out any further.
Your group struggled with the internment. Some literally had to be held back from going out and trying to help the refugees from the Free-Cities. There were now dozens and dozens of soldiers and eventually it became clear it would be suicide to attempt anything now. You did get your carriage and armor though and began making preparations to leave. Your hearts leapt into your throats as Leo sounded your silent alarm that someone was approaching your rooms.
The soldiers kicked in the door next to yours and you heard thrashing and yelling and then someone being dragged out into the streets. You gathered around the two windows in your room, looking out at the man was dragged through the streets, a soldier under each arm, and the mans legs dragging through the mud. Zandar stood several feet away with some parchments in his hand which he held up as he yelled to the crowd. You were able to make out, “Letters addressed from Sunford, the ”/wikis/trystan" class=“wiki-page-link”> Trystan capital, begging their son to come home." and he pointed to the young man who had been dragged to his feet. It was then that you noticed the makeshift gables that had been erected behind Zandar.
It took almost all of you to hold Keled back. Leo and Glore tried to talk sense into him. Falco stood with arms crossed, a flask in hand tucked under his arm, staring out the window. The man dropped. The fall wasn’t enough. It wasn’t supposed to be. He dangled, choked, kicked, and eventually died. He wasn’t cut down, he was left as a symbol, a symbol to the world you now lived in. One you needed to leave.
That night you were one horseback, with your new carriage, you thanked the gods no one stopped you and in the darkness you left.

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A King's Ransom
Help comes from the strangest places

Oct 31 st – Nov 1 st Prelude

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2 Days procuring supplies for travel including a carriage and other supplies.

These are mostly personal items, please note on you character, and check your encumbrance

Falco supplies rations for the group (minus any extra extravagances) whenever the land provides.

Nov 2 nd, Trail Mix

Travelling along the road we are alerted to some activity off the side of the refugee trail. Though the party was ready to repel an imminent assault it turned out to be two men that had slain some [Delanoric]] soldiers that had the mind to sexually assault a refugee of The Free Cities. The two men are revealed to be Allan Greene, a squire from The Free Cities, and Mikel Felrick, youngest son and disillusioned prince of Julian Felrick.

Nov 3 rd, Leo and his way with words

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With the aid of Felrick, the party disguises their presence and approach a heavily occupied border-camp. Knowing their charade would fail a legitimate inspection, Leo steps forward and cleverly bluffs the group through on urgent business. Felrick stays behind believing he can be better used here rather than the Bloodlands.

Nov 4 th – 6 th, Travel

Nothing to see here; carry on.

Nov 6 th, Orc in the Road to Buldrek

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After a couple of days of uninterrupted travel the party finally happens upon a patrol of orcs. Deciding that the orcs would respond better to a show of strength, Keled tries to intimidate the mob. Tries. A bloody battle ensues with the party narrowly avoiding any casualties.

Treasure Gained: 19.4 gp each

Nov 7 th – 8 th, Travel

Nothing to see here; carry on.

Nov 9 th, Going Gruumsh in the Night

It was a perfectly fine camp. Following 2 days of peaceful travel the weather was nice the mood was placid… Though unfortunately the late during the Night Watch a long line of lanterns encircled the camp. With overwhelming numbers the adventurers were looking at the long goodnight, when surprisingly a figure walked out of the woods with words rather than war.

grodar.jpgIn no uncertain terms Grodar explained the quid-pro-quo he expected of the party. He and his cult would provide assistance liberating Hulric Trystan and the party would then retrieve a special item for the cult. Explaining that the cult has agent’s spread all across Bloodfist’s armies and is fully capable of getting this done and without having a choice in the matter, the adventurers begrudgingly comply.

Nov 10 th, Travels with Orcs: Part 1

As the large caravan approaches Buldrek the orcs begin to shed their cult robes and don more traditional garb.

Rations Consumed: 1 days

Nov 11 th, Slave for You

The party is given slave clothing, twine to hide weapons on their person, and are loosely bound. The cult will provide a distraction for the party to escape but until then the must have bags over their heads and be treated as slaves. So they are as they enter Buldrek

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The party are inspected, poked, and prodded by potential buyers. Then one of the guards reties their bonds finding them not satisfactory. The members are brought into an enclosure and tossed into some sort of pen. The guard doesn’t notice the dagger Leo has on his body but another prisoner does. When the guard leaves the prisoner decides he is going to carve himself a piece of the half-elf.

A grunt, gurgle, and warm splash later the company of would-be heroes finds themselves savedby a familiar face: Harren Fisk. The former compatriot had been taken prisoner securing escape for the Ironcast brothers. The used the butchered half orc prisoner as a ruse to get the guard to enter the cage, then murdered him to secure their freedom.

A brief fight took place in the streets with the party not willing to leave Harren again. Then Grodar’s cult began a rebellion that allowed the adventurers to locate their gear and breach the inner-city’s walls unaccosted while Harren secured escape for the other prisoners.

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Facing a number of orcs and a hill giant the party defeats their foes and progresses to free the king of Trystan.

Treasure Gained: Masterwork Great Axe, Master Work Studded Leather Armor; 8 pp and 10 gp each.

They find Grodar waiting at the exit from the inner city walls. They gather their supplies and make haste where they meet up with the remainder of the cult as well as Harren and the handful of slaves he was able to free. The entire group travels a ways before making camp. During the trek Grodar speaks to each character individually and tells them of what they will retrieve and who exactly the cult is.

True Text incoming from Tyler…
The cult requires a crown that is said to have magical clairvoyant powers, a gift of the god Gruumsh. The cult believes that perhaps it will take a non-orc expedition to retrieve it as all orcs that have sent after the crown have never been seen again.

The group also learns more from Hulric Trystan about his plight. He imagines that the investigation into his actual demise may have been short changed by his own brother’s hunger for the crown. He is suspicious of the role his younger sibling may have played in the current state of affairs.

Nov 12 th, The Royal Wave

Hulric and Harren, along with the freed slaves take off on their journey back to the Western Kingdoms. The party still remains with the orc cult.

Nov 13 th – 27 th, Travels with Orcs: Part 2

The party catches up to the other group of orc cultists and Keled’s retainers. They continue on towards the island.

Nov 28 th, Bon Voyage

This is as far as the cultists go. Grodar offers small words of encouragement and even tells Woulf that his sister is alive. He says this not just as a meaningless platitude but as if he is privy to some secret, perhaps Gruumsh has told him this during their “talks”. The parting seems all too beneficial until the orc informs the group that Kyle, Glore, and Shayle shall be kept as collateral. This sends Keled into a rage that Leo is barely able to quell.

Rewards Summary Session 2

Treasure Gained: Masterwork Great Axe, Master Work Studded Leather Armor; Money: 8 pp, 29 gp, 4sp each

Rations Consumed: 1 days

* Experience Gained: 2070*

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