The Ruins of Bael Turath

Quest Log 11

Another nice and tidy session with plenty of action and plot development. First up the party headed off to the Green Fairy to investigate the mysterious death of their favorite merchant. After a fairly simple skill challenge they were able to deduce he was assassinated by a Half Elf dressed as a Shadar Kai. A Speak with Dead ritual then revealed the assassin had left behind a cryptic message the party:

“We will not go quietly, we will take our share of the city. You betrayed us, you are next.”

All signs seemed to point to The Privateers, so the partys next course of action was to attend the Wyvern auction to see what the roguish faction were up to. And sure enough the event quickly deteriorated into chaos with the lives of the party and those several faction leaders threatened by fiery doom. With quick thinking and bold action the party were able to defuse the situation and evacuate everyone safely and decided it was time to pay the Privateers a visit. But by the time they had got to the Private Gate the village was already engulfed in a fire storm, there were no sign of anyone and the gates to the city were left wide open. Never one to miss an opportunity Veshic quickly summoned The Bloodpact armies to surround the burning village and claim it as their own.

Next up the party decided to pay Meloch a visit to discuss an attempt to contact Lord Nerezza, and learned that he had killed Meloch’s niece Sinesta and sent back her heart in response. Meloch was understandably anguished by this and has asked the party to track down the Rapier of Atonement, so that Nerezza can be brought to justice.

And lastly the party went to track down a vicious Arch-Lich, rumored to be in league with Nerezza and responsible for the countless undead monstrosities plaguing the city. This resulted in a fairly intense serious of encounters, leading up to an interesting, and remarkable insightful, encounter with the Arch-Lich himself.

So, how do this weeks quests line up, well most side quests seem to have been tidied up more or less and the party is heading for a big show down with Nerezza. Here’s how it will play out…

Lord Nerezza of The Foreshadow has mobilized his armies, bolstered them with ranks of undead and is preparing to march across the city to re-assert his authority. The Black Market, The Bloodpact and The Raven Knights are prepared to meet his armies head on and drive them back, all that they wait upon is the order from the Wayfarers. Once the Wayfarers are ready the three allied factions will create a diversion allowing the party to slip into the Imperial Palace and bring down Nerezza once and for all.

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Quest Log 10

Well, after a couple of weeks away we were all keen to get back into it and roll some dice. This last session was fairly combat heavy, but it did see the party taking down two dragons at once, as well as an atmospheric encounter with a zombiefied werewolf lord. Needless to say the heroes won though and after the master was slain his hold on the domain collapsed. With the return of the Imperial Gardens, the party were hailed as heroes amongst the Shadar Kai of The Black Market. This mighty deed truly marked them as powerful warriors who do not fear death, but embrace it and walk with the blessing of the Raven Queen. Mistress Zillah advised the party that her people will now heed their call and follow their direction. And as such a meeting was set up with between Zillah and Meloch to negotiate an alliance. Both factions had a variety of terms they wanted agreed upon, and these can be found Here. The party acted as intermediaries and with their help a new alliance between The Bloodpact and the Black Market was formed. The other factions have not remained idle however:

Lord Nerezza of The Foreshadow has set his guards patrolling the alleys of The Grand Bazaar, making trouble and exerting their false authority. Honest Shadar Kai citizens have been accused of treason and hauled off to Nerezza’s dungeons in the Imperial Palace, never to be seen again. The Black Market grows tired of his oppressive rule and wants to see him overthrown. This may prove to be difficult however because the Foreshadow has allied itself closely with the Cult of Orcus, and it’s rumored that a powerful Arch-Lich has warded the palace against any threats.

The Raven Knights continue to battle the cultists and clean the city of their taint, but Commander Corvus reports that for every undead monstrosity they take down, another one seems to be unleashed on a different part of the city. Corvus believes Nerezza is supplying the cultists with Shadar Kai victims for their macabre rituals, and in return has gained the support of a powerful Arch Lich. Corvus’s Knights have tracked the Lich down and has found he lairs in a large ancient Mage-Tower near the Imperial Palace. If the party wants to take down Nerezza they will have to deal to the Arch-Lich first.

The Privateers have announced they will be holding an auction to sell off their newly saddled Wyvern. The leaders of every faction have been invited, and most have replied with interest. In order to keep hostilities to a minimum the auction is to be held on neutral ground at the Helpful Goblin Inn. The Wayfarers are of course invited as guests of honor.

The Merchant Guild have been buying property within the city from both the Foreshadow and Black Market. It seems rivalries and competition can be set aside if enough money is handed over, and by all accounts Ravana has been paying out huge fortunes in rare gems found only in the Feywild. It is unknown how he came across this wealth, but his Guild has certainly grown in strength because of it.

The Vanguard continues their advance into the city, laying claim to various fortifications in its wilder outer regions. They have also clashed with a number of Bloodpact patrols, flaring up old hatreds and perpetuating the centuries of bloodshed. A series of brutal raids against the Blood Gate by the Vanguard have also resulted in the deaths of several Tiefling citizens, with the rest demanding bloody vengeance. It seems Ghesh is just as keen to exterminate the Bloodpact as the Cultists are, and it’s fortunate for the Tieflings that they haven’t started working together… yet.

Meloch has been deep in discussion with Zillah, negotiating the finer points of their alliance and strengthening the ties of the two factions. They have also been planning the downfall of the Foreshadow and the return of the city to Tiefling rule. Meloch recently sent his niece Sinesta to the Imperial Palace to parley with Nerezza and he would like to discuss Nerezza’s response with the Wayfarers.

And finally, the Shadar Kai merchant employed at the Green Fairy was found murdered this morning, his throat slit by a poisoned dagger.

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Quest Log 9

Another straight forward session with plenty action where the party managed to solidify a couple of alliances and move the campaign towards seeing Bael Turath returned to the Bloodpact. There is still a way to go yet, but with a clear goal in sight the party have direction and purpose. The session started off with a meeting with Meloch where Sinesta was giving a report on faction movement within the city. Meloch then asked the party what they thought would be the best course of action in order to gain control of the city. After a bit of discussion the party decided that perhaps an alliance between The Bloodpact and The Black Market would be best, to which Meloch was cautiously agreeable. The meeting was suddenly interrupted at this stage by a violent attack on the Blood Gate by the Cult of Orcus. The players hastily took the rooftops in order to fight off a pair of summoned Shadow Demons and their Necromancer masters.

After a fairly brutal and dramatic fight, with many a daring leap from rooftop to rooftop, the party managed to pull through and defeat the cultists. It was then decided that the threat of cultist activity against the Bloodpact needed to be quelled and so their next objective was to find and defeat Nar the Plaguelord, Master of Rats before he could loose a terrible plague upon their Tiefling allies.

Whilst following Niamh though the city to find the sewer lair of Nar the Plaguelord, Master of Rats the party stumbled across a group of Dark Ones under attack from some undead monsters. Bargaining that the enemy of my enemy is my friend the party raced to the aid of the Dark Ones, and with a few quick words of trust the two groups were able to surround the undead and bring them down. Grateful for the assistance the Dark Ones revealed they had been traveling through the city using rituals to purify the vile necrotic taint of the cultists. The party offered to help them cleanse a nearby fountain and then wished them well in their quest.

A short while later Niamh had found the entrance to the sewers where they would find Nar the Plaguelord, Master of Rats and the party descended into its dark and stinky depths. Before too long the party spotted the horrifying silhouette of a Beholder stalking the sewer tunnels. After a moment to settle their nerves the party decided the best approach would be a full frontal assault, and heroically charged the beast. This is when the sudden ghouls rose up out of the fetid sewerage and pinned the party down while the beholder let loose its terrifying eye rays. The battle was long and bloody, sapping the party resources as they desperately tried to break away from the ghouls and engage with the Beholder.

Eventually the party managed to close in upon the Eye-Tyrant and slay the abomination, but not without taking serious wounds. A quick meeting was called to decide whether to push on or turn back, but eager to press on the party rallied their strength and continued the hunt for Nar the Plaguelord, Master of Rats.

Deeper into the sewers the party ventured, until they spotted a bloated corpse bobbing silently in a murky pool. Foresworn offered to investigate, asking the rest of the party to watch his back while he crept forward. The sudden attack from the murky pool came as no surprise, and Foresworn was able to fight off the Feymire Crocodile for a little while, but before the party to come to his rescue a horde of smaller crocodiles had swarmed in, separating him from their help. The Feymire Croc continued its assault on Foresworn and soon had him locked in its enormous jaws, the party could do little but watch on in horror as the reptilian brute devoured him whole. Enraged by what they saw the rest of the party hacked their way through the lesser crocs and managed to free Forsworn from the belly of the beast.

With healing surges and daily powers almost completely tapped out the party decided once again to push on and confront Nar the Plaguelord, Master of Rats before he could spread his plague throughout the city. They found him surrounded by hundreds of vermin servants, all wracked and twisted by the ravages of plague. In a harsh maddening voice Nar the Plaguelord, Master of Rats cursed the party and promised them a slow and painful death before unleashing his rat hoards upon them. The party met the wall of sickening matted fur and yellow teeth head on and waded through its wretched claws intent on taking down Nar the Plaguelord, Master of Rats. With cold fury and bitter determination the party closed on him from all sides headless to the multitudes of scratching, biting, clawing vermin. But in one finally act of shear insanity, before the party could land the killing blow, Nar the Plaguelord, Master of Rats tore open his own chest, exploding into a swarm of plagueborn rats that threatened to engulf the party. A hastily dropped fireball dealt with the swarm but also left the party dazed, singed and wondering if they really managed to kill all the rats, or if some how, some where, Nar the Plaguelord, Master of Rats had managed to survive…

So, moving on, here’s how things currently stand with the various factions.

The Bloodpact

Wary of any further attacks from the Cultists, the Bloodpact are keen to meet with Zillah to discuss a possible alliance, one which would strengthen their position as the rightful rulers of the city.

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The Privateers

Selini is concerned that Ravana has delivered the Manual of the Planes to Thrumbolg, Lord of Mag Tureah, but has advised the party there is little they can do about it now and that we will all just have to wait and see how it all plays out. The Privateers Wyvern has grown considerably lately and has stirred some interest amongst a number of potential buyers from various factions.

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The Vanguard

Incensed at receiving such a patronizing letter from Veshic, Ghesh has decided he’s sick of waiting and has directing his troops to make an assault on the Magma Keep themselves. The party will have to move quick if they want to get their ahead of the Vanguard.

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The Raven Knights

With Nar The Plaguelord, Master of Rats defeated Commander Corvus is feeling more confidant that they are making ground against the Cultists activities in the city and has sent his scouts out to find any further bases of power that will need to be eradicated.

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Quest Log 8

Fairly tidy session I thought, which included a couple of plot developments, the progression of some player goals and the clearing out of another Tiefling temple. First up the party decided to take up Meloch on the offer of receiving the Blessing of Mammon, with most of them receiving small side quests. Secondly they agreed to pay a visit to Lord Nerezza and discovered the resting place of the two might Generals, high up on one of the balconies of the Imperial Palace. They also discovered The Foreshadow are taking council from the Cult of Orcus and are likely to cause trouble in the future. Next up was a trip to the Raven Citadel to discuss a passage from the Grimoire of Orcus, which revealed the cultists are planning to destroy The Bloodpact as part of a ritual to bring Orcus in this world. And if that wasn’t bad enough, the Raven Knights also mentioned a powerful new ally has joined the cultist known as Nar the Plaguelord, Master of Rats. Last of all the party managed to clear out some cultists from the Temple of Belial, and after a series of devilish riddles, secrets and promises managed to obtain an artifact known as the Staff of Belial. Also, one last thing, late in the session it was noticed that the parties Exodus Knife had gone missing.

So, here’s how the factions are stacking up

The Bloodpact

The Bloodpact currently find themselves in a good strong position, they control four key temples relating to Warfare, Diplomacy, Wealth and Knowledge and feel it is time to start making serious moves towards taking control of the city. Before they make any rash decisions however they feel it would be most prudent to discuss strategy with they loyal allies the Wayfarers. Meloch, now wielding the Staff of Belial, would like to meet to discuss the future of the Bloodpact and how they might go about reclaiming their city.

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The Privateers

Pleased with the delivery of trade goods they received from the Wayfarers the Privateers are now busy securing trade routes ahead of any incursions made by The Black Market, who they see as they main rivals. Their other competitors, The Merchant Guild, have not been overlooked however, and a scout has reported that Rhoswen was seen leaving the Dark Library with a large golden bound tome, which was delivered to Ravana immediately. The Privateers are also still on the look out for a dragon-harness for the fledgling Wyvern, which seems to be growing stronger by the day.

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The Vanguard

Ghesh has taken the opportunity of relative calm amongst the factions to scout out areas of tactical advantage in the city and has decided to take the Magma Keep, by force if necessary. He has asked for assistance from the Wayfarers, but will not wait much longer if they keep delaying. His scouts have also been searching for any sign of the mighty Generals, but as yet they have found nothing.

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The Merchant Guild

The dwarven trader Mons is always a good source of information, and while discussing his latest acquisitions he let slip that Ruby and Ravana were planning another trip to the Feywild to conclude some deal or some such and as usual Mons is being left behind. Still, he’s got his own projects to work on and is still after a Ritual to create Helmed Horrors, if the party happen across them.

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Cult of Orcus

After deciphering the passage from the Grimoire of Orcus the party have discovered the true motives behind the cultists actions. They plan to summon Orcus into this world using the entire City as a focus for their horrific ritual. But first they need to purge the city of any Tiefling bloodlines.

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The Black Market

Mistress Zillah has pledged her support to the Wayfarers, provided they can brave the Domain of Dread, slay its master and return the Imperial Garden back to the City from deep within the Shadowfel. Only such a heroic deed will be enough to win the respect and support of her people, and if the party survives she will be more then willing to discuss any plans regarding the City that they may have.

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The Foreshadow

It has become clear that Lord Nerezza wants to gain control of the entire city, not just the Palace, and has even resorted to working with the Cult of Orcus as a means to an end. His meeting with the Wayfarers may have ended peacefully this time, but tensions are frayed and with the Cultist Merodach to advise him it wont be long before things come to a head.

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The Raven Knights

The Raven Knights were grateful for the influx of so many new members and count the Wayfarers has their loyal and trusted brothers in arms in their battle against the Cult of Orcus. As such they have warned the party of a powerful new ally who has sided with the Cultists known as Nar The Plaguelord, Master of Rats. Nar has been tracked to a deep dark and dangerous section of the City’s sewer system, where only the most foul beasts of the Shadowfel dwell.

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Quest Log 7

What a weekend, three night of play resulted in some fairly serious developments. The Manor House D’Nellil was cleared and readied for renovation and in doing so a Fey Crossing was uncovered. A cultist den was assailed and a Grimoire of Orcus was uncovered. The den also once belonged to House Barikdral, who are now rumored to have been somehow involved with the City’s downfall. A meeting between Ravana and several emissaries of the Fomorians was witnessed and a letter from Ravana was intercepted. The letter revealed Ravana is having the Dark Library searched to find something for Mighty Thrumbolg, Lord of Mag Tureah. Sinesta and her Bloodpact scouts were rescued from some Ogres in league with the Cult of Orcus, who were ransacking the Temple of Mammon. The Temple was then explored and so to was the Vault of Mammon, resulting in some nice shiny loot. Deeper into the City the Faction known as The Raven Knights was encountered and aided with their ongoing battle against the Cult of Orcus. Their history and goals was revealed and they offered to translate the Grimoire of Orcus. And finally The Grand Bazaar was uncovered, with an intriguing offer of support from The Black Market should the party wish to rule the city.

So, with all that has happened, here is the current faction climate and latest quest line up

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The Bloodpact

The Bloodpact have been growing in strength by the day, and now that they control the Temple of Mammon they can learn from the tenants of wealth and ambition that will be required to restore their city to its former spendor. Meloch was overjoyed to see his niece return safely and knows he is once again indebted to The Wayfarers for all they have done, and to make good on his word, he invites them to join him in the newly acquired Temple to receive the Blessing of Mammon.

Now that parts of the city is slowly becoming more civilized Meloch himself has been able to spend some time walking the streets of his Ancestral home, surveying those few areas that have been cleared out. What he’s seen is clear to all those who’ve walked its dark twisted streets, one thousand years in the Shadowful has left its mark on the City, corrupting it from its once fabled beauty. Repairing the damage and restoring its splendor will take the work of master craftsmen and learned architects, the ones who followed the teachings of Belial. Meloch would be most pleased if the Wayfarers could find and secure the Temple of Belial for him.

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The Privateers

Thanks to the Wayfarers there is now a fresh Ogres corpse naturally incubating the Privateers treasured Wyvern egg. While they are unsure exactly how long it will take to hatch, or even if it is still viable, they still have plans for it. The Dragonborn of old were masters mounted combat, riding drakes and dragons in to battle with the use of enchanted saddlery. If any of the invading Dragonborn saddlery has survived the Privateers would love to get their hands on some.

News of the Grand Bazaar spreads fast and the Privateers have managed to sneak in a few scouts to survey the markets and size up their competition. Not surprisingly what they have seen has sent them into a flurry of activity. The Privateers are always keen to buy into any potential markets before their rivals can and see a huge market for Shadar Kai made items. As such they would appreciate it if the Wayfarers could purchase a sizeable supply of trade items on their behalf. They’d do it themselves but are certain the Black Market would over charge them and then simply undercut the Privateers prices. Redrellon will provide the list of items and the money to buy them.

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The Vanguard

With the relative peace amongst the factions the Vanguard have been able to push their new troops into the City and begin securing footholds. One such site has been found that would serve as an excellent staging area, as it is easily defendable owing to its natural moat of lava. It is currently the home to a large pack of Hell Hounds and the Vanguard have been unable to clear it out, so they have asked for the Wayfarers assistance in this matter. The Hell Hounds seem to be acting in a manor that would suggest that someone of something is directing them, perhaps they are protecting something of value other than the site itself.

Ghesh is also still keen to find out where the duel between the two Generals took place so that he could set about freeing them and allowing Bharash to claim his victory. And Sheba still has an open bounty on all Dragon hearts.

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The Merchant Guild

Ravana’s distraction of late has turned to out right irritation. Something is troubling him and he appears to be growing impatient, as such he as sent Ruby off to the Feywild on some mission of import. In brief moment of calm he has politely asked the Wayfarers to secure an item for him. It was once said that the Sages of Belial carried with them great staves of power which granted them heightened understanding. Ravana would very much like to wrap his hands around one of these. He also mentions that he is eager to learn more about a place known simply as The Crucible]] and wonders if perhaps the Wayfarers could secure it for him.

Mons is also in the market to buy a copy of a Ritual that will animate his suits of Cambion Plate, turning them into Helmed Horrors. He is sure a copy of such a Ritual would reside in the Dark Library but seeing as only Rhoswen has been granted access, he has asked it the Wayfarers might be able to track down a copy for him.

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The Black Market

Mistress Zillah was pleased to meet with the Wayfarers once again, and has pledge her support should they ever wish to make a bid for the throne. To win the support of her people however she suggests they commit an act of heroic bravery to prove their strength. Within the city there was once a large Imperial Garden which has now fallen into a deeper shadow. It has become the Domain of Dread, an isolated pocket bound to the Shadowfel by some dark creature. Many of her finest warriors have entered the Domain, but none have returned, so she can not tell what lies beyond its misty borders. All she knows is that once its master is destroyed, the curse will be lifted, the gardens returned to the city and the Wayfarers will have won the trust of her people.

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The Foreshadow

A squad of Shadar Kai guardsmen have arrived at the Green Fairy to deliver a letter bearing the seal of the Foreshadow. Word of the Wayfarers exploits have traveled throughout the city like rumors on a breeze, tales of a band of adventurers battling their way through the outer streets and securing ancient places of power. Such stories stir the blood and several young Shadar Kai have requested entry into the Wayfarers. Ever mindful of the safety of his people, Lord Nerezza has requested to meet with the Wayfarers in order to assess their motives. It is all very good for outsiders to risk their lives exploring the wilds of the outer city, but to endanger his people, or to encroach upon his domain, is another matter entirely.

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The Raven Knights

After a fortuitous meeting with the Wayfarers, the Raven Knights have accepted the Grimoire of Orcus and have begun deciphering its foreboding pages. It is of course filled with the usual deranged fanatical profanity claiming Orcus to be the one true god of death, supreme master of unholy powers and crux of all destiny. But one passage stands out with grave and dire significance…

“And lo, for it shall come to pass that those who walk in his shadow and commit their death unto him will be blessed at his coming. Risen up as Kings the blessed shall sit on thrones of bone and rule over the faithless mortals that will wither and fall before the sight of his magnificence. His footsteps upon the world will be the tolling of its funeral bell, and all will serve his will. His servants shall open the gateway using a bloodless heart, a focus that has spent time amongst the realm of the dead.”

The Raven Knights wish to discuss this finding with the Wayfarers and decide upon a course of action.

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The Wayfarers

The Wayfarers now stand at a crossroads, it is in their power to decide the fate of the city, who will rule it and what its future may be. But will they make a stand and end their neutrality, tip the balance of power and sever old alliances? Or will they simply watch, letting its fate be decided by the warring factions as the City is carved to pieces. The Gathering Storm approaches.

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Quest Log 6

A highly successful session I thought, with every faction benefiting and no sore grudges, well except perhaps against the Merchant Guild, but more about that later. An ambush against the Vanguard was thwarted, without the Bloodpact finding out what happened. The meeting with the Black Market went well, resulting in a powerful new ally for The Wayfarers. And a successful assault into the City resulted in the finding a perfect site for a base of operations, the slaying of our first dragon and the discovery of the fabled Dark Library. Well done all! Everything just seemed to click into place and the game flowed really well I felt. The players also managed to pick up a number of side quests and some tasty loot, including a carriage. So now, on to the quests…

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The Privateers +1 Rep

Now that the Privateers finally have a copy of the stone to flesh ritual they will be able to restore their petrified Wyvern egg and begin the process of incubating it. Research has shown that mother wyverns typically cover their eggs with the remains of a large fresh kill. The heat generated from the gradual decay is enough to keep the egg at just the right temperature, also nutrients from the kill seep into the egg as the body decomposes, nourishing the developing Wyvernling. And finally once the egg does finally hatch, the Wyvernling has enough food nearby to build up its strength. Fascinating.

The Privateers would be most appreciative if, during a foray into the city you just happened to come across a large freshly killed body, you wouldn’t mind passing it on to them, so that they might begin the incubation.

Selini also has news regarding the Merchant Guild, and their ongoing negotiations with the Fomorians. Ravana is planning to meet a delegation of Cyclopes in a Feywild glade within the next few days. Ruby has been asked to accompany Ravana, so perhaps Mons knows some further details. I’m sure we could all agree that it’s in everyone’s best interest if this meeting didn’t take place.

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The Bloodpact +1 Rep

Meloch was left feeling betrayed after the fiends he’d hired to ambush the Vanguard reinforcements failed to complete their mission and instead stole off with his payment. Luckily the Wayfarers were able to track down the payment, Bel’s Greatsword, and return it to the much relieved Meloch.

Meloch was once again thanking the Wayfarers when the sacred Infernomicon was finally delivered to him. After searching for so long the Bloodpact could finally read from its hallowed pages and gain from its wisdom. Meloch bowed low before The Wayfarers and offered his most humble gratitude and promises to reward them with the Blessing of Mammon, should the ever find his Temple.

Finally Meloch also asks if you’ve heard anything of his niece Sinesta? She went scouting into the city with a group of Bloodpact but hasn’t been seen since.

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The Vanguard +3 Rep

Ghesh was most pleased with the assistance offered by the Wayfarers. Not only did they safely escort a new delegation of troops to the Dragon Gate, but they were also able to tell what happened during the Duel between Bharash and Felazure. Somewhere deep in the City these two noble warriors are frozen in time and locked in eternal struggle. Ghesh would very much like to find out where this duel took place so that he could set about freeing the two Generals and allowing Bharash to claim his victory.

Sheba also thanks the Wayfares once again for bringing a dragon to justice and promises to reward them handsomely again for any other hearts they bring in.

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The Merchant Guild +1 Rep

Ravana could not have been happier to finally gain control of the Dark Library and, despite a little difficulty gaining entrance at first, has set Rhoswen to review and catalogue its contents. Ravana himself seems preoccupied with some other matter at the moment, so he and Ruby have no other requests to make of the Wayfarers. Mons on the other hand politely reminds them that he is still in the market for any Cambion place they may come across.

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The Black Market +1 Rep

Mistress Zillah left the meeting with the Wayfarers feeling she had made the right decision. The Wayfarers have been asked to meet with her again, at The Grand Bazaar, to further discuss the details of their newly formed alliance. As a sign of good faith the Wayfarers have promised to bring along a gift of a Pristine Fey Emerald, and will also keep an eye out for any sign of a mysterious faction within the city that is rumored to fight under the banner of a Raven.

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The Wayfarers +3 Influence

After an incredibly successful series of events, the Wayfarers find themselves even more popular then usual, and with new recruits signing up daily the time has truly come to find a proper base of operations. To that end Solana has kindly supplied the funds to restore an old manor house the Wayfarers found while exploring the City. The only catch is it needs to be cleared of whatever foul denizens of the dark are currently residing within.

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Quest Log 5

So, an interesting evening to say the least. Two quests pretty much fell to bits for very good reasons, while the other two turned out far better then I would have ever expected. Now seeing as I want this campaign to have a real dynamic feel to it, where players actions and choices have big impact on the story, I would love to get some feedback on what you liked, what you felt didn’t work so well and what type of quests you want. I have a backbone of a storyline sketched out, but everything else is pretty much fair game. After Saturdays session, the general consensus was that dickish quests that leave The Wayfarers having to betray their friends were not appreciated while more time spent exploring the city would be great. So with those ideas in mind I give you the next round of quests…

The Privateers

Despite losing a warehouse filled with foodstuffs to an unexplained and quickly overlooked fire, the Privateers impressed with the efforts of the party and Selini welcomes you all to feast with him and his kin any time. Especially Cardoc and Solana. Sileni also suggests you pay a visit to Grady, a half-elven alchemist working at the Private Gate. Grady has a number of useful potions and elixirs for sale, but is looking to increase his repertoire. If the Wayfarers happen across any Alchemical Formulae in their exploration of the City, he would love to get his hands on them, and in return will then make said items for the party, at a discounted price of course.

The Merchant Guild

With all the missing belongings returned, Ravana was able to make amends with the distraught Eladrin Nobles and a guild war was averted. Ravana was deeply indebted to the Party for their swift action and rewarded them with a magnificent gift, his very own Exodus Knife. Now that the recent dramas have been dealt with the Merchant Guild are once again able to focus their attentions on making profits and procuring items of wealth and power, such the very rare Cambion Platemail. These suits of exquisitely crafted non-magical armor were worn by Teifling nobles at the height of the Bael Turath Empire. Mons would like The Wayfarers to track down a set and promises to reward them handsomely if they do.

The Vanguard

After a tumultuous night the Vanguard are once again counting their losses, but luckily still within the relative safety of the Dead Dragon Inn. A Teifling raid hit them unawares deep in the night. Unawares, but not unprepared. Earlier that day a Hobgoblin mercenary group known as the Red Hands of Doom had approached the Vanguard looking for work, and proved their worth that very night. The Teiflings fought hard but were eventually driven off after both side took heavy losses. The fact that The Bloodpact were able to execute this raid without the Vanguard knowing is proof their Scrying Ritual has failed and stronger measures will need to be taken in order to protect the Dragonborn A delegation of new Vanguard troops is expected to arrive in the next few days to help bolster their numbers. Ghesh would appreciate it if the Wayfarers would ride out to meet them and guide them to the Dragon Gate, preferably avoiding any aggression from the Bloodpact.

The Bloodpact

Without the help of The Wayfarers, the raid on the Dead Dragon Inn did not go well. The mission was a failure and the Bloodpact lost a number of fine warriors. The Bloodpact are now licking their wounds and have learnt a number of valuable lesions. Firstly, their hated enemies are more resourceful then they expected and secondly, that the Wayfarers wont be bullied or goaded. The Bloodpact have decided to focus their attentions elsewhere and have sent a number of scouting parties, led by Sinesta into the Bael Turath City to learn more about what happened to their people. Meloch would appreciate it if the Wayfarers would check in on them from time to time and offer assistance if needed.

The Wayfarers

After defeating a Shadar Kai Witch at the Mayhem Tourney and subsequently meeting her again at the Private Gate, the Wayfarers have managed to convince her to arrange a private meeting between them and Mistress Zillah, Leader of The Black Market. This meeting is set to take place at Mayhem and if the Wayfarers make a good impression it could lead to a fruitful relationship between the two factions. Incidentally, Cardoc managed to secure a private meeting of his own and plumped a handmaiden for some interesting information.

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Quest Log 4

RIP Cetanu Kinslayer

So yeah, we’ve had our first fatality in 4e… whose next? After Glen’s character died and he left the room to roll up another, the survivors of the encounter got together to discuss what went wrong, at great length. In short, everything, but in general I think they all agreed that teamwork and unity will be needed if they want to survive the perils of Bael Turath.

Apart from the regrettable demise of Cetanu, the last sessions went really well. Lots of character and story development. Lots of faction interaction, and a couple of new NPCs. I’ll post up a list of relevant NPCs later on to help you guys keep track of who’s working for whom, but there are still a couple to introduce yet. Anyway, on with the next adventure, and as promised, here’s the next round of our regular features, including a brand new one from Rhoswen at the Merchant Gate. Each week Rhoswen will be offering to cast a specific ritual, at a discounted price. The party is welcome to use this to further the story line, forward their own agendas or what ever dastardly plan they can conceive. So without further ado…

Rhoswen’s Discount Rituals

Is your partner being faithful? Can you trust that trader’s word? Does that hide armor make your butt look big? If you want the truth, if you want to cut through all the lies, then you are going to need this Ritual cast on you: Rhoswen’s Delayed Discern Lies – only 200gp After Rhoswen casts this ritual on you you’ll be able to trigger it with a word, discharging the spell and giving you a +20 bonus on all insight checks to discern any untruths spoken in your presence for the next 5 minutes.

Mons’ Weekly Specials

This week Mons has something straight from page 179 of the Adventurers Vault, and not only is it heavily discounted, but Mons can also arrange for it to be made with your faction’s logo.

Battle Standard of Might

This flag is marked with martial runes that inspire strength in you and your allies. Wondrous Item 840 gp (Now only 500gp!) Power (Encounter:Zone): Standard Action. When you plant the battle standard in your space or an adjacent square, it creates a zone in a close burst 5. While within the zone, you and your allies gain a +1 power bonus on damage rolls.

Shadey Pete’s Mayhem Tourneys

In honor of the tragic passing of Cetanu, Shady Pete is holding a special tourney at Mayhem in his memory. It will be a brutal match where anything goes, no holds barred and no ring outs. The prize break down will be the same as last time, with two new prizes up for grabs: a +2 Crossbow of Frost and a pair of Bracers of Defense.

Now on to the quests. There has been a bit of power shuffle going on, so keeping in mind your reputation with each faction is also an indicator of that faction’s influence, and vice-versa, here’s how everything stands.

The Bloodpact

It will only be a matter of time before The Vanguard realizes the Bloodpact have been manipulating their Scrying Ritual, so with three of their strongest warriors dead or missing, now is the best time to strike. Delaying any further would just be foolish and dangerous. Meloch requires your assistance with an assault on the Vanguard, not as The Wayfarers, but as allies of the Bloodpact. He doesn’t want anyone killed, all he wants is for the Dead Dragon Inn to be burnt down so that the City Gate it guards will be more accessible to all. He will meet with you at Mayhem to discuss the plan in full.

Meloch would also like to find a copy of the Infernomicon, a treatise on the Tiefling Deities and Temples within Bael Turath, which will hopefully aid in locating and cleansing the remaining lost temples. The last known resting place of the Infernomicon was in the Dark Library.

The Privateers

Ever on the lookout for new trade opportunities, the Privateers rarely turn away any potential clients. This time however they may be in over their heads and rumor has it the Privateers have made a deal with someone even they can’t get the best of. Selini, leader of the Privateers, would like to meet with you in his [[Great Hall] at the Private Gate to discuss this delicate matter.

Also, after acquiring a certain stone object from a certain dwarven trader the Privateers now request the services of the Wayfarers once again in locating a copy of a very rare ritual, Stone to Flesh. A copy of which will almost certainly lie in the Dark Library.

The Merchant Guild

As if to add insult to injury, a number of Eladrin Nobles have reported they were robbed on the night of the assassination of their Sapphire Princess. Ravana is absolutely furious, not only has he had to placate the grieving family but now he is being held accountable for returning the missing belongings. He is certain The Privateers that were found that night are responsible and is close to declaring all out war on them. As [[The Wayfarers] have always held a neutral position amongst the factions he calls on them once again to retrieve these items, by any means necessary, before Ravana is forced to do so himself.

Ravana is also waiting for the Wayfarers to make good on their promise the find and secure the Dark Library on behalf of the Merchant Guild. However, this matter can wait until after the missing belongings have been found.

The Vanguard

Things have not been going well for the Vanguard. In the space of a few days they lost three noble champions. One was killed in a brutal blood sport, no doubt rigged by The Bloodpact. Another fell while exploring the City, presumably in the interests of the Vanguard. And the third, a renegade, was executed by the Merchant Guild when it was found he was working alone in an assassination plot to kill an Eladrin Princess. While Ghesh has nobly taken responsibility for the renegade’s regrettable actions, relations between the Vanguard and The Merchant Guild still remained a little strained. At such a vulnerable time the Vanguard are grateful to have the friendship of The Wayfarers and particularly for the Scrying Ritual that was previously cast upon the Bloodpact which will alert them of any possible attacks. But now they must ask another favor, in order to bolster their ranks again the Vanguard will need to recruit some mercenaries. Ghesh would like to meet at the Dead Dragon to discuss this further.

Ghesh would also like to know more about the battle between Bharash and Felaszure, the commanders of the Dragonborn and Tiefling armies that met to duel the day Bael Turath disappeared. From the information the party gathered from Rhoswen’s Ritual, he believes the information he seeks can be found at the Dark Library.

The Wayfarers

As mentioned before, each time the party successfully completes a major quest in the name of the Wayfarers your faction will gain influence and greater standing within the campaign. Currently the Wayfarers only have a small following, with a few scouts working out of the two known Tiefling Temples, but pretty soon they’ll start drawing a stronger following. This will probably result in some young keen adventurers looking to complete quests for the Wayfarers or perhaps even contact from the factions within the City. First things first though, and the Wayfarers are going to need to find a base of operations.

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Quest Log 3

Ok, so to sum up last weekends sessions, too many players and too many monsters. Not much I can do about the players (if you run it, they will come) but I will be changing the way I handle monsters from now on. You’ll be seeing smaller groups of higher level threats, as opposed to wave after wave of minion trash. That’s not to say I wont use minions from time to time, I think they are great, but its obvious combat works a lot better with fewer targets and less chaos. So, I’ve gone thru my extensive mini collection (seriously, I have a problem) and made up some interesting encounter groups, ranging form level 5 to level 10, all using no more then 5 mobs, usually with one obvious leader. This should hopefully streamline combat a bit.

I’ll also try to spend a bit more time on non-combat encounters, as these seem to be the real winners at the table and bring out some nice role-playing and character interaction. The only drawback there is combat encounters are relatively easy to set up and flesh out, while non-combat takes a lot more time and preparation. However, to start things off I’d going to introduce to new features to my campaign, Mons’s Weekly Specials and Mayhem Tourneys.

Mons’s Weekly Specials

Mons will be selling new magic items acquired from within the city at reduced prices for a limited time only. Obviously these new and exotic items will be of interest to the Privateers, not to mention the party. So feel free to buy, steal, trade or sell these items as you see fit the next time we get together. First up:

Onyx Dog Level 4 Wondrous Item 840 gp (Slashed to a Crazy 500gp!) This figurine, sculpted of reflective onyx, depicts a barking dog. Power (Daily, Conjuration): Standard Action. Use this figurine to conjure a black mastiff (see below for statistics). As a free action, you can spend a healing surge when activating this item to give the creature temporary hit points equal to your healing surge value. Power (At-Will): Immediate Reaction. Use this power when an enemy adjacent to the onyx dog attacks you. The onyx dog makes a bite attack against the attacker.

Mayhem Tourney

Shadey Pete, everyone’s favorite shifty little eye patch wearing Halfling has been resurrected by the Privateers, and to pay off the debt he’s currently fixing, I mean running, Tournaments at Mayhem, with prizes for those who win two or more rounds. And just to make things interesting, these fights will be 2 on 2 and Activated Magic Items are now allowed (normal daily magic item rules apply). Players are welcome to take part, and place bets, usually at 2:1 odds. Players are also welcome to try to find out who else is entering and what their strengths and weaknesses are. The prizes this week are as follows: win two rounds and you get to pick between a Shield of Defiance or an Amulet of Health (both level 8), win 3 rounds and you walk away with both!

And now, on with the quests…

The Bloodpact

Meloch, High Warlock and Leader of the Bloodpact, has asked The Wayfarers to find the Iron Tower and secure a path to it so that it can be used as a place of worship once again. Well the Wayfarers have found it, but now it needs to be explored and secured, who knows what has taken up residence within over the last 1000 years. Also, Meloch would like to find a copy of the Infernomicon, a treatise on the Tiefling Deities and Temples within Bael Turath, which will hopefully aid in locating and cleansing the remaining lost temples. The last known resting place of the Infernomicon was in the Dark Library.

The Privateers

After acquiring a certain stone object from a certain dwarven trader the Privateers now request the services of the Wayfarers once again in locating a copy of a very rare ritual, Stone to Flesh. A copy of which will almost certainly lie in the Dark Library. Secondly, after the embarrassing encounter with the Shadar Kai, the Privateers are looking to salvage something from the meeting. While The Merchant Guild knows the two factions met, they don’t yet know what was discussed or what the outcome was. The Privateers would like to capitalize on this and throw the Merchants off guard by passing off some mundane items as Shadar Kai crafted goods at the Merchant Gate. The Elvish courier Redrellon will outline the details.

The Vanguard

Now that the Vanguard have magical spies keeping tabs on the Bloodpact they are free to focus their attention on gaining control of the city once more. There is a human Sorceress by the name of Rhoswen at the Merchant Gate, she works for the Merchants as a Seer and ritual caster. Ghesh would like the party to have her cast a ritual to Consult the Mystic Sages, and ask a number of questions on his behalf about the city itself.

The Merchant Guild

After failing to assist the Merchants in two ventures (planting the vial on Redrellon and letting Mons speak with the Shadar Kai) the party’s reputation has fallen slightly. Merchant Prince Ravana has invited the Wayfarers to meet with him at the Merchant Gate, so that a better understanding of each others needs can be met.

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Quest Log 2

Greetings! Time again for a quest log catch-up as well as a look at the current reputation standings in my campaign. During the last epic session almost all the outstanding quests were completed, including several impromptu ones, netting a huge amount of rep for the party as well as some nice customized items. Also a new Faction was created, lets hear it for The Wayfarers!

Currently the Wayfarers have ratified an agreement with The Vanguard that will allow small groups of Tieflings through the Dragon Gate in order to reach the Temple of Bel, so that the Tieflings may pay their respects to one of their long lost deitys. There were various restrictions, but the Vangaurd are not without honor and were more then happy to see to take their enemies gold and see them humbly bow before them. The Tieflings, many of which from The Bloodpact, were eager to once again pay tribute to Bel, Lord of the First, even if it meant kowtowing to their sworn enemy. But of course, Tieflings were never above making deals with the unsavory in search for more power…

And so, it is with great pleasure I introduce the Wayfarers Influence Tracker. As the members perform great deeds and complete quests their influence will grow, they’ll gain new members, friends and probably enemies too, as well as access to new magic items, rituals and properties.

Now lets take a look at what the other factions are up too.

The Bloodpact

After the news that a Temple of Bel had been found, and that they would be granted access to it, a sense of eagerness seemed to wash over the Bloodpact. Ever since the disappearance of Bael Turath, the Tieflings ties to their Dark Lords had been severed, leaving them alone and abandoned in a harsh world. But now with Bel’s strength and tactical cunning to guide them once more they feel one step closer to reclaiming their city. The next step will require the services of the Wayfarers and Meloch has asked the party to meet him at the Blood Gate.

The Vanguard

The capricious Bloodpact have ever been a thorn in the side of the noble Vanguard and as such, certain measures need to be taken from time to time. Using the necromantic water taken from the city, as well as the goblin heads collected previously and the blood of a valiant Dragonborn warrior, the Vanguard required a simple ritual to be performed at the Blood Gate. They give their assurances it will not result in violence or turmoil that would tarnish anyone’s reputation.

The Privateers

Ever on the look out for new trade opportunities, the Privateers have managed to arrange a meeting with a faction from within the city, a group of Shadar Kai calling themselves The Black Market. The Privateers have agreed to meet them on neutral territory outside the city in the markets around the Blood Gate to close a deal, and would appreciate it if some trustworthy friends were nearby just in case the deal goes bad.

The Merchant Guild

The Merchant Guild have allied themselves closely with the Vanguard, but wouldn’t mind hedging their bets a little and getting in good with the Bloodpact as well. This of course is near impossible with the Privateers using goods stolen from the Merchants to help undercut prices and monopolizing certain commodities. Since there is no recognized Trade Councils in effect it falls to the Merchant Guild to ensure fair business practice is enforced, but first they wish for a certain courier to be casually intercepted on his way to the Blood Gate. All that is required is that this vial be slipped into his latest shipment.

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