Keep on the Borderlands

1. Prison Grotto

9/22/10: New campaign! This one is taking place on my home-brewed world of Nyrod. I was able to scrape together a group and it went quite well.

RPGA Sanctioning #:    10-06-2324432

Hirbe - Eladrin Mage
Kaname - Human Theif
Quinn - Human Knight
Tornam - Dwarf Warpriest
Varian - Eladrin Mage

The Keep on the Borderlands was situated near the Chaos Scar - a dangerous stretch of land where a strange meteorite had crashed and attracted evil of all sorts. Many used the keep as a base for excursions into the Chaos Scar.

A caravan had come to the Keep. A monk called Venn rounded up adventurous types and invited them to dinner at a priest called Benwick's house. Venn served the heroes wine as Benwick made the heroes a proposition.

Benwick was certain that a denizen of the Keep named Ronnik was involved in a plot to resurrect the evil draconic god Tiamat (who died/will die in the Scales of War campaign). Benwick also believed that Ronnick had stolen a gem from a temple of Clarissa known as The Serpent's Eye. The gem had been taken from disciples of an evil snake god called Zehir. Benwick had hired a spy named Gordi to investigate, but Gordi had been captured. Gordi was being held in a cave in the Chaos Scar. Benwick asked the heroes to free him.

The heroes agreed, and were to set out for the caves the following morning. They decided to stop in the tavern called The Stumbling Giant for drinks.  Inside was a portly woman tending bar, a weird old man sitting alone in a dark corner, and three seedy-looking men at the bar standing over a mug, cackling.

A waitress approached the heroes' table and asked what they'd like to order. Varian said "I'd like to order you."

She liked the looks of the eladrin hero and giggled playfully. She ran off to get the heroes drinks. She returned to the table with four dirty mugs full of watered-down ale, and one gleaming glass full of fine mead for Varian.

Kaname was interested in what the three goons were up to. He sauntered over to them, quietly slipping one of their money pouches into his pocket. They told him to go away. Kaname was astonished to see that they were holding a two inch tall samurai man in their hands, repeatedly dunking him into a mug, laughing as the poor fellow nearly drowned.

Kaname begged them to let him try once. They allowed it. Kaname held up the little samurai, who look at him, pleading "Prease! Prease!". The samurai clearly wanted to be free.  Kaname called to his friends, hoping they'd attack the goons while he made a break for it.

But Varian was chatting up Mandy, the waitress. He tried to follow her into the kitchen, but the woman tending bar yelled at him and then told Mandy not to be so quick to fall for every handsome stranger. 

Hirbe was trying to befriend the weird old man who was glaring at him with his one good eye. He'd had two drinks sent to the man, but the man purposefully pushed both off the table. He said to Hirbe "I know your game, boy... with your tight gloves and all."

Hirbe had no idea what he was talking about.

But the knight Quinn and the dwarf Tornam were watching Kaname. They approached the goons, and Kaname slipped out of the tavern. Quinn put his blade to the throat of one of the goons. The woman behind the bar yelled "We don't need violence. Don't make me call for the guards!"

But it was too late. The goons grabbed Quinn and slid him down the bar. Quinn got up and punched one of them, knocking them out cold. Another goon grabbed a mug and broke it on his face, scarring Quinn (he rolled a critical).The third goon grabbed Tornam and threw him through a glass window.

Quinn ran over and punched him in the gut, knocking him out. Tornam climbed through the broken window and dropped the third goon with a punch. 

While that was going on, Kaname was outside. He put the little samurai on the ground and said "You're free!". A stray cat nearby hissed at the samurai, ready for a quick meal. The samurai drew a tiny katana and charged the cat. It swatted him into an alley and pounced after him.

Kaname went back inside and saw the unconscious goons. He tried to make like he was healing one of them as he rifled through his stuff. The woman behind the bar saw what he was doing and told him to get out. Mandy informed the heroes they'd best get out before the town watch arrived.

The heroes did as she suggested. They slept at the Travelers' Inn for the night. The next day they made their way toward the gates. Along the way, they saw the stray cat. It coughed up a hairball, a tiny helmet and a tiny skull. It had apparently eaten the little samurai. Varian took the helmet and put it on a necklace. Hirbe plucked a katana impaled on the cat's cheek, wishing he could have met the samurai. He thought of keeping the cat, which was a nasty little creature.

The adventurers made their way toward the Chaos Scar, following Benwick's directions. They were soon at the cave. Kaname could see inside, there were lizardfolk, a guard drake and a dragonborn. He also heard faint moans - possibly from a captive Gordi in a pit on one side of the cave.

The heroes headed into the cave and attacked! Kaname launched an arrow into the guard drake's neck, causing blood to spew out. A lizardman rushed them and threw a net over Tornam and Hirbe, hindering their movement. From a dark ledge, four lizardmen fired blowgun darts at the heroes.

Hirbe began chanting, using a spell to send the lizardman flying back and into the pit where poor Gordi was lying. Then he freed himself from the net and grabbed it. With Tornam still trapped in it, he swung the net around and struck the dragonborn with it. Tornam cracked the dragonborn in the jaw with his hammer as he swung around. The dwarf came around again and killed the dragonborn with a second blow of the hammer.

Kaname took aim and fired a second arrow into the guard drake's eye, killing it.

In the pit, the lizardman tried in vain to climb out. Hirbe swung Tornam in the net around and then let go, sending the dwarf hurtling into the pit. The net came free as the dwarf hurtled through the air. Tornam gave the lizardman a crushing blow with his hammer as he plunged into him. then, to make things worse for the lizardman, the net landed on him, immobilizing him. Kaname raced over to the edge of the pit and took aim, firing an arrow into the top of his head, killing the lizardman.

Quinn made his way across the cave and climbed the 15 foot high ledge where the lizardmen were firing blowgun darts from in darkness. Varian cast light on Quinn's armor, illuminating the area and allowing ranged attackers to take aim. Quinn climbed up and sliced into one, killing it. Varian cast an arcing fire that killed the second of the four darters. Quinn killed another, and the last one was finished off.

The heroes found a pendant bearing Tiamat's symbol on the dragonborn. They also found poor Gordi, who was beneath Tornam's feet in the pit. Tornam was sure the man was poisoned. He used Create Water to give Gordi a drink. This helped, and gordi said that Benwick could cure his condition.

The heroes rested for a moment, and then set off to get Gordi cured...