Rudi's Notes 04-21-17
The end of Desnus and Seranith’s start
The Viridian Guard returns to their home in Valour, to recuperate and plan for a longer stretch on the road. They are determined to map out the land to the south of the Green Belt, but not before they set their house in order.
Faderean teaches the spies in his employ to read and write, and listens to the rumors they have heard. Some travellers and laborers from the Gnarlmarshes, talk about a green dragon roaming the lands. He’s not entirely sure about the reliability, but it’s not the first time he’s heard these rumors either.
Sear spends his time outside of court negotiating contracts and mediating disputes within the fledgling kingdom. Minor conflicts about land rights, trade deals, and small claims, he’s able to appease most, and earn a tidy sum for his efforts in the form of 20 GC.
Hydrastis forages, earning 10 GC for collecting herbs for the peoples of Valour, and selling them to different peoples; for spicing up gamey meat and winter vegetables that have become increasingly bland, for poisoning the vermin that inevitably follow any civilization and spread their disease, and importantly tending to the infirm.
Glod is able to use them for exactly this purpose, healing his congregation and the other citizens of Valour. Many of the sick were poor, but he cures what ails them. They offer what little they can, and gathers 5 GC from what paltry sums they were able to scrape up, a testament to the efforts Glod made to cure them.
Rudi spends his time with Dhavik, paying to set up a small training area that would suit his stature, and to pay the enforcer for the efforts he had made to teach him how to hit harder. After some time, he learned how to throw his whole body behind his attacks, and make a more powerful strike at the cost of some accuracy.
Pirec roots around the library, gleaning what information he can from the meager selection of books within.
On the grander scale, the council of Dun Scaith complete the road to Tatzlfjord, connecting the settlement that Lloyd and Latricia promised to develop if they paid for the costs up front. But that’s not the only addition to the map. As OIeg grew to become a greater fixture as the gateway to Dun Scaith, and more and temporary housings go up around the traders, they officially establish a settlement there. Named Bandit’s Lament after Happs Bydon and the other bandits that were slain in a failed attack, or tried and hanged afterwards, and give OIeg and his wife Svetlana some money to spruce up his place to become a more legitimate shop. They divert even more money to both settlements build proper housing, and wait for the growing list of projects to complete.
5th of Desnus, Year 2
On the anniversary of the day that the Stag Lord and his army of bandits were defeated. Known in Dun Scaith as [[Rudi’s Notes 07/22/16 | Stagfall], Sear gathers the troops together. Standing on the steps of the library once more, he looks out at the militia standing tall in their assorted leathers and chain, clutching a variety of weapons.
“Protectors of Valor! The people thank you for your hard work and dedication!” He begins, the eyes that are still faintly glowing from the will o’wisp attack sweeping over the crowd, drawing them all in.
“You are all fortunate men! I can think of no one more capable than General Cassius Surtova to train you. He is a man whose actions embody the spirit of Valour. He has saved my life, and the lives of the Viridian Guard countless times. In the face of impossible odds, when all seems lost and broken, Sir Cassius is the one who lowers his visor and charges straight into danger.” Beside him, Cassius stands in his gleaming armor, his face impassive.
“Like Sir Cassius has surely taught you – your duty, your city and your people are worth your lives if it comes to it. There is no greater glory than to die on your feet, defending what is yours. Like everything our good general embodies, you would risk everything to save a single innocent. No matter that danger you, and our noble General, will rush to lend aid.
“There used to be nights when I prayed that when the wolves came for their share, they would come for me. When I look at you brave soldiers today, I know that it is not us, but the wolves who should pray.
For the rest of the day kobolds and wild elves, nobles and poor, even the visiting Kellid joined in on the feasting and drinking, celebrating the founding of Dun Scaith.
6th of Seranith
The following day, while the people nursed hangovers, there was a big commotion around the freshly built pier. Men and women ran, crying for the guards who hastened to assemble. As the Viridian Guard charged towards the source, they spot lizardmen approaching upon a barge heavy in the water with fish. Sear and Cassius are able to calm the people, and eventually they help to unload the offering.
Rudi, spotting Yizzik, walks forward and greets him, the pair clasping each other by their forearms. Sear spends some time trying to convince the lizardman to join them in their search for Crackjaw, but he refuses. Instead, he tells the sorcerer that the turtle lives in a secluded pool that can only be reached by swimming.
With the delivery complete, Rudi asks for a rather large share of it. He asks Faderean to bring the wagon around, and with the others in tow hauls it to Kilthirka with the frog eyes he’d collected from the kids in Faderean’s employ, and the knuckles he’d collected from the road.
In return, Kilthirka tells Sear she she thinks that the Chief of the Sootscales made the right choice in not siding with the trolls when they approached him about attacking the burgeoning kingdom. Faderean also talks her into giving him additional loot, and she hands him a wand that grant a person similar abilities to a frog, a wand that increases a person’s leap.
When Rudi asks about improving relations, however, she asks for a house next to Adwid Surtova’s mansion, claiming if she were really a respected leader of the community, she should have a home with the nobles. Cassius says the land would be available for her, but it would be up to her to build the house. She’s uninterested in that deal, so Rudi stomps out with no reward for all of his work.
7th of Seranith
With the plans for the kingdom in place, the Viridian Guard gathers their supplies and venture southeast to make their journey around the lake. In the first day, they see a man walking with 3 wolves on a leash. After some small talk where he admires Thlayli, he reveals his name is Yarith, and claims he’s a wolf trainer.
“Isn’t this a little too convenient?” Rudi whispered, leaning towards Cassius and Sear. “ A man with a whole lot of wolves walks up just days after we had a situation with a lycanthrope?”
Yarith excuses himself, but Cassius stops him.
“We need you to come with us, to answer some questions.”
“Why? I didn’t do anything.” But before he could run, Sear casts glitterdust and blinds him.
“I’ll be killed either way,” he says. It takes some convincing, but he finally decides to show he’s a lycanthrope, and sprints off into the woods despite the magical grease, the grasping vines grabbing at him from the ground. Hydrastis tries to talk down the remaining wolves, while Sear and Faderean fire both magic and missiles into them, but they’re so worked up only one submits and Faderean kills the remaining two.
Cassius, however, spurs Mandarb on, chasing down the werewolf. Out of breath and on the verge of collapsing from sheer exhaustion, the party members try and convince him to work with them one more time. Glod, however, can sense his evil nature and speaks against it.
When Yarith tries to flee again, Cassius runs him down.
In the aftermath, Hydrastis talks to her new wolf friend. She says she never had a name, and the man was like her and the others of her pack.
“In some ways he was,” Hydrastis responds. “But not others. He left you behind, to attempt to save himself. He was diseased. There is another like him, called the Northern Howls. Do you know of them?”
She didn’t, but agrees to travel with Hydrastis and the others.
They spend the rest of the day, as well as the next, mapping out the region.
9th of Seranith
The party comes to a river leaving east of the the lake. They spend some time searching for a ford so they could cross the Tuskwater River and eventually find a cross that turns into a three mile stretch of cliff rising over the river. The Viridian Guard follows it up, ascending 40 feet into the air, and looking out over the forests. They’re unable to find a path down initially due to the stinging nettles blocking their path, but Hydrastis is able to dig through them and spot a hidden trail.
With the feral hunter leading the way, they head down the 50 foot trail to a tranquil pool at the Tuskwater’s edge. The secluded cove reminds him of how Yizzik described Old Crackjaw’s home, and he throws some old wolf meat in. The water is disturbed, but he doesn’t show himself. The party slowly moves into position, and Hydrastis and Rudi attempt to fish him out by tying a piece of meat to a length of rope anchored a tree. Instead, it snaps the rope, and without warning emerges partway from the water.
“ Crackjaw!” Hydrastis calls, speaking the tongue of the giant turtle. “You’ve been harassing the people of our kingdom for too long! Either move on, you will perish! I beg you, please leave your waters!”
“Fuck you!” He hisses in response. Cassius attempts to get the turtles attention but to no avail, and he lunges from the water towards the elf.
The others hurl magic and weapon at him, but hardly slow his charge. His mighty, beaked mouth rips through her armor, despite her defensive magic that turns her corporeal form into mist. Glod rushes forward, healing the elf, and Sear blinds Crackjaw while Rudi jumps onto it’s back, jabbing down with his trident to offer himself up as a target instead while calling for Hydrastis to run. A well aimed shot from Faderean punches through Crackjaw’s skull, and he slips motionless back into the shallow pool.
The party tends to their wounds, and Sear casts detect magic. Faderean and Cassius check the waters first, but avoid the muck in the bed of the secluded pool and come up empty handed. Rudi, exasperated, jump in and digs through it without any concern, letting his own detect magic spell guide him. He pulls out a giant rock covered in muck, and when he cleans it off, he hands a disgusted Sear a large bluish green gem the size of the thumb to forefinger.
- Elemental Gem of Water – Summons a large water elemental when crushed
With Old Crackjaw taken care of, they explore the region, and turn their eyes to the rest of the lands surrounding them…