Rise of the Planar Trade Consortium

Rise of the PTC Run 3 - Synopsis: Anchoring Silverton Pt. II

Having climbed through the foothills the party is finally ascending the White Mountain. As they approach the tree-line they are ambushed at the top of a ridge-line by a hunting party of kobolds. A slinger and a pair of skirmishers tangle with the party while a hoard of kobolds nearly over-run Rook. Despite some heavy damage to Rook and Greth, who both got ahead of the battle line, the fight finishes out quickly with the party victorious.

Continuing up past the tree line Sioned leads her group further up and into a vast snowy bowl below the top of the mountain. As they cross the floor of the bowl the white dragon Verminithrax lands some distance away and drops a hoard of kobolds led by their wyrm-priest and a dragonshield to deal with the party. He flies down and roars as they advance before banking off towards a looming cornice of snow and ice hanging over the bowl, nature-canny characters get a “very bad feeling about that cornice”. Despite a number of the party being stunned, and the wyrmpriest buffing the minion kobolds, the fight goes fairly quickly. Again Greth and Rook take a fair beating, though Rel certainly takes a bunch of it as well. The party then flees the bowl, barely escaping an avalanche triggered by Verminithrax dropping the ice cornice down on them.

Some searching reveals that the only way to proceed further is to pass through a tunnel into the caldera of the White Mountain. Coming out of the tunnel is warm, moist, air scented with growing green things, not what is expected this far above the treeline and into the snow and ice. Also in the tunnel are a pair of kobold skirmishers leading a small force of kobolds, accompanying them are a pair of fire-beetles they use as guard-dogs of a sort. The fight is straightforward and fairly quick. This time the brunt of it mostly falls on Rel, as it should.

Through the tunnel the party finds a vast jungle, several square miles at a minimum, fills the caldera. The whole area is kept hot and moist by bubbling mud-pits and pools of water. A lake fills the center of the crater. As the party tracks fleeing kobolds they begin to hear drums in the jungle. They sneak up to a village consisting of a ring of huts in cleared area, around a central fire dance a number of kobolds. Drumming a beat for the war-dance is Jall, a dragonborn warrior, Jall bears a mighty weapon, a maul from the mists of the dawn times. The party charges in during the surprise round and combat ensues . . . .

We call it a night and wrap up the battle-mat, taking notes of positions and current statuses, as time runs out. Most (though not quite all) of the kobolds have been slain, but Jall and a kobold slyblade also remain up and in the fight. Next Tuesday we will resume in the middle of the fight!

Session 1: Rise of the PTC

The game began with Greth, a githzerai monk, fleeing his monastery as it fell to a githyanki invasion force. As he escaped out the back-door there was a flash of light as a portal activated and he vanished from the realms of elemental chaos.

Bulwark, a recent model war-forged from the Cannith forges in Sharn, fell on the field of battle in Cyre due to overwhelming damage. When he woke it was to a confusing scene with several mechanical beings looking him over and talking about him while he lay stunned and barely conscious, their consensus was that his equipment was non-standard and that control protocols would be impossible to implement. They condemned him to be cast into “The Cage” along with the other rogue modrons for exile/destruction, they then followed through with that threat casting him into a portal along with his gear.

Our last hero, a young bard by the name of Sioned, grew up on the fine world of Mudh. She was looking forward to a grand time adventuring with a group of companions she had met the previous evening in a local bar-room. After slipping the bartender 5 gold pieces they heard about a nearby “dungeon” and headed out the next morning filled with optimism and dreams of adventure and treasure. It didn’t work out the way she hoped when she fell down a pit and was shunted out through a portal into the unkown.

The three are united when Greth exits his portal through a doorway into a ruined courtyard and sees Sioned come tumbling out of a window, nearly landing on Bulwark who stumbles out of a second door. The air is smoky, and sharp with the tang of metals, and rich with the smell of rot, call it a cacophony of foul stenches. The sounds of a massive battle come from nearby, and many of the nearby buildings seem to be on fire. The three make some brief introductions but are interrupted as the fire in one of the nearby buildings drives a swarm of rats onto them. After fighting the rats off they hear a cry of distress from the interior of the building and go in to try to rescue whoever it is.

Greth and Bulwark rush into the house and clamber up a stairway to try to reach the back of the building, pushing a wall down they open a passage to the back, and Sioned joins them. They discover an exit to an alley, and find an odd-looking blue-skinned humanoid collapsed unconscious on the floor. Bulwark holds up the ceiling as they grab the victim and escape the building as it collapses due to structural damage from the fire and Greth and Bulwark’s earlier demolition work.

Both exits from the alley prove too dangerous to venture, battle on one side and baatezu force advancing on the other side, so they clamber into a window to the second floor of one of the buildings abutting the alley. Within they manage to wake the creature with some first aid, and a Majestic Word from Sioned. Outside a battle rages between legion devils and a mob of tanar’ri, they can also see another blue-creature hiding in a nearby alley. As they question the creature some a trio of dretches are thrown through the wall and fall into the room. Greth charges one of them as they rise, and then combat ensues. It is a very hard fight, during which Bulwark is knocked unconscious briefly. But after it is over they grab the injured humanoid and book for the alley. They are noticed by a force of legion devils and barely escape down the alleyway into a basement just in time to evade the devils chasing them.

They meet more of the humanoids who answer some questions and reveal that they are “Dabus”. They say that they are all doomed for their Lady (and yes you can hear the caps) fell in battle with the god of this place and has not yet wakened even though she was victorious. Until she does they say that all the doors to “The Cage” will only open inwards, and that currently the entire cage is filled mostly with Baatezu and Tanar’ri who come here solely to kill each other, and everything else in their path. They say that only through the sacrifice of life could a portal out be made, unless Her Serenity their Lady is woken. Some of them seem to think the three non-dabus arriving now (the players) are foretold in prophecies as coming at the time that their Lady will wake. This is possibly supported after an hour or so as some of the younger dabus seem to be recovering some of their magic powers.

Just as the group is finally settling into an extended rest several terrified dabus come crowding in from the entrance saying that the devils have found them and are advancing down the tunnel to the warren. Sioned coordinates the dabus in bringing the roof down on the entrance to stop the enemy advance, which is successful although it costs two dabus their lives as the roof falls in on them. Everyone then flees down an escape tunnel . . . only to be rat-trapped in it by another force coming down that route.

Most of the dabus move to try to hold off the devils for a brief time. Others begin digging in the dirt wall with their hands while the chief dabus negotiates with Sioned. It says it will help them escape, but they must promise to try to return and help wake their Lady if they can, the group agrees. Three dabus come forward to the chief who borrows Bulwark’s sword and slays the three, after which it cuts out their thigh, shin, and arm bones. The dabus places them into the soft earth around the alcove they dug to form an archway, and then casts a ritual to enchant the archway of bones turning it into a portal, and sacrifices it’s own life to fuel the ritual. The party flees through the portal.

They arrive in a lightly forested wilderness near a road. Exhausted, they make camp there and sleep for the night.

Come morning they meet a human merchant named Estevan who is escorting a troupe of young halfling girls to a mining camp where they are hoping to find husbands. He is traveling with an unnaturally intelligent lion he calls Fartooth, and hires the group as guards once it becomes apparent that they’re not bandits. Aided by Sioned’s travel songs the caravan soon arrives at the town of Silverton. (I suppose it’s worth mentioning that Estevan is a spitting image of Harry Mudd from TOS, and is just as highly moral a person as he is as well)

Silverton seems panicked by wild rumors of undead activities and the whole mining camp is preparing to pack up and move out. Estevan tries to hold his deals together, and asks his three guards to investigate while he negotiates. The group asks around, finding ever-wilder rumors, until they finally meet up with the leader of the camp, an ancient gnome by the name of Kesto Brighteyes. Kesto is terribly near-sighted, and seems to spend most of time going over the camp’s records while surrounded by a massively disorganized pile of books, enough books to fill a library and more, and on many topics. Sioned’s eyes light up at the sight of so much knowledge she could acquire if she could just read all the books.

Kesto tells the group that there’s been reports of graves being dug up in an ancient graveyard not far from the camp, and that just recently one of the miners came in spouting tales of skeletons and zombies, he mostly dismisses it as “the folly and foolishness of youth, misinterpreting everything.” He does note that there is a “real problem” as well, a dragon. Sioned gets him to agree to let her look over his books if the players can deal with his troubles.

Meeting up again w. Estevan the three are informed that he needs to jump a gate nearby to investigate the trade potential on the other side of it, and that if they can take care of his problems in Silverton he’ll cut them in for a “fair” portion of his profits. Sioned is mightily suspicious as her insight check reveals that Estevan may have a radically different definition of “fair” as compared to everyone else, but the group agrees nonetheless. As Estevan departs with Fartooth they prepare to climb out of the gorge the camp is in and go examine the nearby graveyard.

Thus endeth the session.

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