Friday, 6 July 2018

The Forest of Wisdom

After another day of celebration we are approached by Mayor Nibson. He has a somber look on his face and is acting quite strange. It seems that one of the residents of Alna, Nia, has left the village. Apparently there was a disagreement between her and the elders. Nibson has asked that we find her and apologize to her for the village. The mayor believes she has fled to the Forest of Whispers. Our third trial will be to find her and try to convince her to return.

The next morning we head off and journey 2 days to the north. The journey is uneventful and brings us to an ancient druid circle. This place has not housed any ceremonies in quite some time but its familiar nature makes for a good place to camp. Or so we thought. Before dawn we are attacked by a pack of ghouls.  We manage to destroy them but unfortunately the encounter seemed to be to much for one of our party members. In the morning, Nihil decided to leave the group and return to a life in the forest. Hopefully we will join up with her again some day.

After saying our goodbyes, we continue our search for Nia. Before leaving, our ranger friend spotted a set of tracks the lead to the west. We decided to follow them and after an hour we came upon an old, rundown plantation house. From the outside the house looks as though it hasnt been inhabited for decades. Strangely, there is a light coming from inside.

While the rest of us are coming up with a strategy for what to do next, Grulog, once again, gets bored and decides to kick in the door. With the decision made, we enter the house. The interior of the house looks very different from the exterior. Everything is well kept, candles light the moment you enter the different rooms. There is however a strange moaning or wailing coming from the second floor.

As we are surveying the room an old hag enters. She invites us to join her for dinner in the other room. While the others join her, I decide to slip away to investigate the second floor.

After taking a secret staircase in the study I can hear the moaning getting louder and louder. Finally I find the room that all the noise is coming from. I quietly open the door and before I can blink a banshee rushes past me. At this moment the true nature of the house is revealed. The house has not been up kept. It was all an illusion. The banshee disappears through a hole in the floor toward the dining room, and my friends. I follow it as fast as I can but before I can do anything the beast bellowed its terrible wail. And that was the last thing I remember.

I was revived by our druid to find the banshee slain and the hag now freed. As it turns out, she is the woman we were sent to find, Nia. She has been under the banshees spell and unable to think freely for many years. When we tell he of Mayor Nibsons apology she agrees to return to Alna with us.

Along the way we encounter some ghouls again. Its no wonder that druid circle has been abandoned. Other than that, our journey is uneventful.

Saturday, 28 April 2018

The Cove of Storms

After a day of celebration with our friends in Alna it was time to set out again. The second trial would take us the the Cove of Storms, a three day hike, due east. The purpose of our journey was to each recover a glisten shell.

The trek there was uneventful. The cove was surrounded by high cliffs. Despite the coves name, the water lapped gently on the pristine white beach. The sand was smooth and there were small sea creatures and birds playing in the sand and around the 3 giant rocks that were scattered on the beach. In the center of the cove there emerged a a stepped pyramid upon which sat six glisten shells.

It seemed that this was going to be a very easy task. Kriv would use his Cloak of the Manta Ray to swim out to the monument, collect the shells, and we would be on our way. Then, as we approached the boulders, everything changed. It turned out that they were actually giant crab men. Though we doubled their numbers these creatures were powerful foes. It took some serious team work but we managed to defeat them.

After narrowly avoiding disaster, we gathered our prizes and began the trip home. Along the way we are confronted by a party of gnolls. These primitive creatures were little challenge for us as we quickly dispatched them. With two more encounters under our belts we were able to return to Alna more powerful than we left.

Sunday, 15 April 2018

The Cave of Shadows

For a little while now, I have been calling the village of Alna my home. Nestled in the woods, it is a place that is surrounded by natural beauty. It is unencumbered by buildings, walls, fences and other things meant only for keeping people out. Those who live here do so for two reasons. One, they are no longer welcome where they came from and two, the other residents have chosen to let them stay.

Today is a special day for a small group of us. Today is our name day. Our group is as diverse as the population of Alna. There is the dragonborn sorcerer, Kriv. The lizard folk, Lish and the half-orc, Grulog, both of whom are barbarians. Then there are the wood elves. The ranger Nihil and her druid sister whos name I cant seem to recall.

The mayor, Nibsom, summoned us to the center of the village. A small crowd gathers and he explains that in order to remain in Alna, we must prove our worth. To do so we must undergo 3 trials. Each more difficult than the last.

Our first trial takes place in The Cave of Shadows. Almost immediately upon entering the cave we could tell it was a dangerous place. Four giant spiders were milling about in the first rotunda. With two powerful fighters, a couple of spell casters, a master archer and my stealth there was no doubt the six of us would be able to handle four spiders without much trouble. Unfortunately, while we were finishing up the first two, some of us werent paying attention, and two more fiends snuck in. This mistake nearly cost us everything. We managed to overcome this surprise and learned a great deal from the encounter. Badly hurt, we decided to make camp for the night. But not before dining on some delicious spider stew!

In the morning we went further into the cave. Here we found a strange shrine. on the floor there was a very large blue glyph. On one wall there was a gigantic stone cauldron with a red liquid in it. The liquid had the consistency of cherry flavored sugar water. Though, non of us dared drink it.  The back of the shrine had a strange statue in it. It appears that the jaw of the statue opens and closes but we were unable to find a way to activate it. Perhaps the most perplexing thing was the four scarecrows laying randomly around the shrine.

After a little bit of investigation, Grulog got bored and threw one of the scarecrows into the middle of the glyph. The moment the straw hit the ground the glyph turned red and all of the scarecrows sprang to life. Having learned from our mistakes in the previous battle we defeated them in no time flat. When the last pile of hay met its demise, the jaws of the statue opened. Inside we found six, round, golden coins. Each coin had a hole in its center and one of our names on it. We have completed the first trial. Time to head back to Alna and find out what we face next.