Dark Dawn

The Black Sands - 3 Man Army

Waking up the next morning after the scorpion attack, Andorra humbly requested that they at least investigate what happened to the rest of the Snake Skulls. She led them to The Black Sands Ruins, the known base of Zeburron’s Raiders. Going for the head-strong approach, the party charged in on kanks and the raiders guarding the entrance to the catacombs that lead to Zeburron’s base. The party then battled through wave after wave of raiders, almost to the brink of their own demise, to save the last four surviving memebers of the Snake Skulls, the chieften Alec, and two females and a male.

The party then tactfully retreated, realising that they could not take on Zeburron and possibly more raiders lurking in the catacombs. From Alec, the party found out that soon after they departed Snake Skull Village, the rest of Zeburron’s 100 raiders turned up and lay seige to the camp for weeks. The Snake Skulls atempted to trade Zeburron for their villages’ well-being. After the trade had been made, Zeburron’s raiders then moved into the camp, either killing people or capturing them.

The party then returned to Altaruk, with the remaining Snake Skulls in tow. When they reached Altaruk, they immediately cashed in on all the Zeburron’s Horns Tattoos, recieving a whopping 50gb for every tattoo. The party then managed to have various items made out the carapace of the Scorpion King.

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Altaruk - The Veil of Altaruk

The party reached Altaruk with heavy hearts but looking forward to putting aspects of the past behind them. Altaruk is a trading town that was, and still is, founded by the biggest Balican trading houses, House Wavir, Tomblador and Rees. Upon entering the city, the group encountered a strange, crazy-looking dwarf who muttered something about the rebirth of Kalack. The party followed the dwarf and were led into an obvious trap. Dust was captured and bound while Tiran surrendered and Razak escaped.

Turns out it was a big misunderstanding. As soon as the group entered the city, Razak was flagged as Dragonborn Sorcerer with possible defiling intentions. The leader of Alatruk, a Balican noble named Arisphistaneles, interrogated Tiran and Dust until he realised the mistake that had been made. Arisphistaneles revealed that he was head of the Veiled Alliance cell in Altaruk, which is also the Veiled Alliance’s strongest foothold within Athas. He then convinced the two to find Razak so he can train him in hiding his magical energies, making it less obvious to magic seekers.

Arisphistaneles reimbursed the party for the mistake mades and offered them his connections within Alatruk, in exhchange for the party accepting a task for him. He informed them that they had lost contact with the Tyr cell after the Tyr Revolution and wished them to investiage into the whereabouts.

Silas, Arisphistaneles psionic advisor, directed the party onto an illegal enchanter who would enchant Tiran’s Sword of Truth. They also found an armor merchant who deals specially in armor crafted from Athasian creatures. Tiran, jealous of Dust’s Scorpion Scale Armor wanted some of the same. The party decided to keep an eye out for scorpions on the way to The Black Sands to retrieve their mounts and Andorra.

The party immediately headed towards Snake Skull Village. Upon arrival, it was immediately apparant that the village had been raided, the villagers either dead or taken. The group retrieved their five remaining Kank and set up camp for the night. Razak gave the dead villagers a proper funeral pyre.

In the middle of the night, the party were woken by scorpions attracted by the burning bodies. Amongst them was the Scorpion King a gargantuan scorpion mutated by the defiling magic that made The Black Sands what they are thousands of years ago. The party defeated the scorpions, relying on Malik to do so.

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The Trade Road - The Deal of the Gaj

The party departed Ledopolus with a victory under the belt and many coins attatched to it. The Eladrin Refugees followed, still seeking a new home. The adventurers headed towards Altaruk. After a couple of days journey, the party encountered a Gaj, a creature that is rare but not unheard of.

The leader of the Gaj offered the party a safe passage and even an ability in exchange for all the Eladrin. The party refused and fought the Gaj, even with the help of some of the eladrin, but the Gaj proved too much for them and they were forced to submit. The Gaj then slew all 50 Eladrin in front of their eyes, including Sariel, the Eladrin Chieften and even the children.

Through some shrewed logic, something which the Gaj appreciate, Tiran Arslan managed to convinced the Gaj to part with the original ability promised. The party continued on their way, overburdened with dishonour (you would assume).

A couple of hours later, the party arrived at Grak’s Pool, a tent-town caravanserai which is overlooked by ancient buildings housing natural water springs. They were immediately approached by a Mul mercenary who led them to Grak. Grak is a half-elf mercenary captain who had moved into the abandoned ruins and discovered natural water springs. From this he and his mercenaries monopolised on them, charging outrageous prices for drinking and bating in the water.

Grak asked the party to represent him to Tithian and request Tyr protection against Balic, especially when it comes to the tax collectors. The party agreed and went on their way to Altaruk.

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Ledopolus: Attack of the Hill Giants

The party rode on the shoulders of Hill Giants to attack House Tomblador on the north side of Ledopolus. Naturally, attacking Hill Giants gain the attention of towns so civillians and guards came to see what was happening. This also meant that House Tomblador was prepared for it.
The battle was long but the party were eventually victorious without a single Giant losing its life. The Giants departed back to their Island and Bruthambar was grateful for a minimal amount of damage to the greater part of Ledopolus. He payed them the agreed upon amount plus a bonus for eliminating House Tomblador.

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Ledopolus - The Bridge of the Estuary

You head towards the twin towns of Ledopolus which staddle the Estuary of the Forked Tongue. Upon arriving, the party encountered Jerome a representative of the Merchant Dynasties, House Wavir, who usually spends his time in Tyr. Jerome recognised the adventurers from Tithian’s court. After being led to the headquarters of House Wavir, they met the Dwarf Chieften Bruthambar, who is also the mayor of Ledopolus.

He tells you that they are having a problem building the Ledopolus Bridge from North Ledopolus to South Ledopolus. They needed to build a support structure on Ledo Island but the island is occupied by a settlement of Hill Giants. Until recently, the Hill Giants were reasonably friendly with Ledopolus but lately they’ve turned hostile and are refusing to trade their flint or let anyone on the island. Bruthambar also said that if the party could resolve the problem without causing harm to the Giants, they would recieve a bonus.

On a side note, Bruthambar told the party the Eladrin could stay and utilise the town as long as the adventurers stayed but when they moved on, the Eladrin had to go with them.

The party decided to head to Ledo Island and investigate what could be irritating the Hill Giants. On the extremely expensive ferry ride over, the adventurers discovered that all the silt skimmers were owned and ferrymen employed by the merchant dynasty, House Tomblador.
At the island, the party met with the Hill Giant chieften Grak. Grak explained that they had caught several dwarves attempting to steal from their flint deposits and that the bridge was just a ploy to steal more of their flint. Looking at the bodies of the dwarves showed no insignia or markings.

The party figured the ferrymen would know who these dwarves were, though their current ferrymen claimed he didn’t know. They headed to North Ledopolus and the headquarters of House Tomblador, who they assumed would have records of not only who all the ferrymen were but also who was travelling on the silt skimmers.

Inside House Tomblador headquarters, they met with the Ledopolus’ representative, a Thri-Kreen named Ye’Tich. Ye’Tich refused to show the lists of their employed ferrymen, telling them to go down to the docks and see for themselves. And despite how many times the party asked to see them, Ye’Tich claimed they did not keep records of who travelled on the silt skimmers.

This was enough for the party to suspect House Tomblador. After being thrown out of the headquarters and interrogating some ferrymen, they found out that once the bridge is built, the ferrymen would become useless and House Tombaldor would lose its monopoly and control over the passage from North to South Ledopolus. At that current time, House Tomblador charged extra fees and levies to opposition merchant houses wanting to use House Tomblador’s services.

Thr party headed back to Ledo Island to further question and negotiate with the Giants. Upon arriving there, it didn’t take long for them to work out that House Tomblador was the one sending in dwarves to upset the Giants. The party convinced Grak to attack House Tomblador in revenge. They also found out that their ferryman had abandoned them on the island, probably hoping they would be killed by the Giants.

The Giants offered to carry the party on their shoulders back to the mainland. Dust flew on ahead to North Ledopolus to warn Bruthambar that the giants were there to only attack House Tomblador. Bruthambar seemed happy with this as he had no great love for Tomblador.

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Lands within the Winds - Fire in the Winds

At the peak of Slither Citadel, Calder picks up the lamp, causing the draconic bone construct to drop from the ceiling and attack them. Realising that the Bone Dragon was much too powerful for them in their weakened states, the party fled like cowards (Dust making his getaway on a magic flying carpet).

Dust found a Giant Skull Helm that would have long ago controlled the small skeleton army hold up in Slither. Unfortunately, it was broken and only caused the skeletons to attack the wearer. Dust attempted to utilise the magic in Zeburron’s Helm to repair the Giant Skull Helm to its full capacity. Unfortunately, the magical engineering failed (just) and the magic of Zeburron’s Helm was destroyed, and the Giant Skull Helm restored to a shadow of what it once was.

Meanwhile, the rest of the party discovered a cache of maps, some of them very valuable. The party spent the night in Slither, despite its dangers and set out in the morning. It wasn’t long (1 minute) before they realised that they had no idea where they were.

They were also able to summon a Djinni called Malik from the lamp. Who didn’t seem pleased with his current situation and also claimed to no nothing about the Sarcophagus’ Key

The party followed the fading tracks and magical traces of Slither’s path towards the North-East. It wasn’t long before the the party’s tracking methods started to fail, a sandstorm blowing away the imprints. Fortunately, the party encountered a strange woman named Sariel who claimed her home was being burnt away by an primordial spirit.

After cautiously agreeing to help, the party followed her, taking odd turns through the sands until the eventually came to a strange forest on a rocky plateau. This was the beginning of the party’s first visit into the Land within the Winds and their first encounter with Eladrin.

They were met by a wary middle-aged looking Eladrin who quickly explained, along with Sariel that there were survivors in the castle that needed evacuating and that the fire caused by the elemental was destroying the magical forest.

The party tracked down the elemental spirit which happened to be Igni, the same fire elemental they freed from a minotaur-esque binding under Ree’At. Igni explained that he needs a host since the only thing keeping him alive was this forest as a fuel sorce. After Razak refused to be a host, the party decided to offer Igni the lamp in which Malik resided, though they figured that would have to kill Malik first.

Pitching elemental against elemental, it was very apparant that Malik was the better. The party then decided to kill Igni (not before making it apparent to Malik what their plan had been). After quenching the eternal flame of Igni, the fires in the forest dimished, but not before the the forest was forever damaged. The essence of Igni embedded itself into Penivia’s war-axe, a single rune appearing on the blade.

The party then evacuated the rest of the Eladrin from the delapidated castle. Upon returning to the apparant leader of the Eladrin, he barely thanked them before asking for help relocating the Eladrin to a new home. He also told them their current location is in between the two arms of The Trade Road.

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Slither - The Crawling Citadel

Under the guide of Andorra, the party immediatly headed towards Slither, which was roughly due south of the now turned-hostile Silver Spring. On the way the party encountered two escaped female slaves, Penivia and Talithra, who had killed their slavers and were now heading towards a settlement called Freedom. Freedom was supposedly a haven for escaped slaves and ex-raiders fleeing everything. The party agreed to help the two ex-slaves in return for the Slave’s aid in their quest for the Sarcophagus’ Key.

The party of seven found Slither easy enough, perched in some mountains between Black Sands and Altaruk. As soon as the party drew near to the Citadel, it pried itself from the rocks started descending down towards them. Using the speed of the Kanks and grapel hooks, the entire party were able to snag onto the massive pylon legs as it moved through the desert.

The amulet was a front door key and allowed them easy access to the ground level of the bone-made fort. On the first level, the adventurers encountered two Bone Golems which nearly killed the party. The two golems were guarding an armory full of hundreds of bone weapons and some interesting types of armor.

On the next level, the party enountered a room with 48 skeletal warriors. While they seemed inanimate, they were animate enough to hold onto their weapons.

On the second floor, the party walked into an ancient library that was worked entirely by skeletons. They were scribing down information in a strange language. The party were tolerated only as far as they kept quiet and didn’t take the books off the shelves.

On the third floor, they recklessly opened a door which unleashed a wave of bones. The bones poured out from a room which had collapsed. On the fourth and final floor, the party finally came to the top of the Citadel. In the middle of the final circular room was a lamp on a pedestal with a wrapped up carpet at its base. From the roof, a draconic bone construct watched as Calder picked up the lamp. The skeletal lizard dropped from the roof, intent on attacking.

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Silver Spring - Attrocities at the Caravanserai

The party made their way back to Silver Spring, intent on taking Toramund’s amulet which is the key to Slither. They arrived at Silver Spring with no problem, but this didn’t extend to Silver Spring itself. The party plain out asked Toramund for his amulet which he of course refused. The party then devised a hasty way to steal the amulet out from under Toramund’s nose.

At nightfall, thinking on the fly, Calder devised a devious plan. Teaming up with a bunch of Thri-Kreen who felt cheated by Toramund’s pointless treasure hunt several weeks ago, Calder used them to distract the guards from the party’s actions. Sneaking into Toramund’s chambers, they found Toramund and only one of his guards.

Killing the guard and Toramund himself, the party took the the amulet and the fake one they had created back at their first visit. The party made a hasty escape but not without people noticing. Calder and Ichtaca made their escape over the walls, in the same manner as the Thri-Kreen they betrayed. Dust secretly made his way back to the inn and feigned ignorance. Razak descended from Toramund’s balcony wrapped in arcane fire in full view of guards and merchants and was expelled out of the Caravanserai immediately.

In the morning, Dust was questioned by the Elven guards and successfully convinced that he knew nothing of the night’s events or where his companions where. Dust managed to leave the Caravanserai with all but one of their six Kanks.

Meanwhile, the rest of the party encountered the Thri-Kreen who weren’t pleased to say the least. But through some careful diplomacy/bullshit, Calder, Ichtaca and Razak managed to talk their way out of it. The next stop was Slither.

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The Black Sands - The Ex-Raiders of the Yarneth

With a clear goal in mind, to find the remnants of the Snake Skull Raiders, the party set out for The Black Sands. It would take them approximately 10 days of travel to reach there, something which they adequately prepared for. The first part of the journey to Silver Spring was uneventful. While resting in Silver Spring, they met with Chief Toramund, who showed he had the real amulet in his possession, the one he had requested the adventurers and other groups to find a couple of weeks ago. It turns out he always had it and was just trying to see how desperate people were for 100gp.

The party continued on their way, encountering a pack of Anakore at night, which they managed to fend off, almost losing Calder to the sand. The next day they encountered several raiders mounted on Kanks lead by a man Dust recognised as Zeburron the Iron Rider, a raider leader who is well-known throughout all of Athas. The party managed to defeat Zeburron and kill his escorts. Zeburron surrendered and the party forced him to reveal that he is a tailess Tiefling. With Zeburron in tow – minus his magical items – the party continued onto the Snake Skull’s camp, this time mounted on Kanks.

They finally arrived and were met with appropriate caution. There they met the current chieftain of the tribe, Alec. The party traded Zeburron for a guide that would lead them to Slither. The blood that runs through all Snake Skull Raiders lets them know the location of Slither. In the process (can’t really remember how) Dust accidentally wed the guide, who also happened to be the chieften’s daughter, Andorra. They also found out that the key to Slither’s front door is currently the amulet in the possession of Toramund. Leaving the camp with their guide/wife accompanying them, they started to make their way back to Silver Spring.

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Tyr - The City of Opportunities

For the first night back in Tyr, the party stayed in the household of Arslan. The next morning the group reported back to Templar-King Tithian, basically saying that they had inadequate information on the informant within Tyr.

Tithian then explained that after the death of the Sorcerer-King Kalak, he found reference to an ancient artifact hidden below Ree’at that held the power to destroy the Sorcerer-Kings. He believes that this artefact is the Sarcophagus and it contains a being of great power.

The Sarcophagus was used to lure Sorcerer-King Dregoth during his rise to power 2000 years ago. The other Sorcerer-Kings united to defeat Dregoth under Ree’at. Though it would seem that he was not defeated but merely trapped in a gigantic steel cage, a cage from which the adventurers freed him.

Templar-King Tithian told the adventurers that he found one reference to the key to unlocking the Sarcophagus in the word ‘ Slither

Using the resources of the library of the Golden Tower and the word on the street, the group managed to divine that ‘’ Slither’’ is the name of a citadel/fort that once belonged to a band of raiders nicknamed the Snake Skull Raiders who were led by the Mul defiler Yarnath. The problem is that the citadel is made of Mekillot bones and moves on its own accord, its current whereabouts unknown since the demise of Yarnath and his raiders 30 years ago.

According to the ex-Snake Skull Jaker, remnants of the Snake Skulls set up a village in The Black Sands.

After gleaning this information, the party continued their investigations into the informant in Tyr. After investigating their main suspect Templar Ratebourne, it seemed that there was no evidence of an informant of Urik being in Tyr.

After returning to Xalos the Stonecutter, they forced him into leading them to Sand Street, the location of Xalos’ source. Inside an abandoned house, they found what seemed like a cult lead by a Psurlon named Gear, an entity none of the party had heard of before. Gear explained that there was no informant for Sorcerer-King Hamanu. Templar-King Tithian had not grasped the idea that the Sorcerer-Kings were very aware of what was under Ree’at and would do anything to not only protect the artifact but most likely prevent Dregoth’s discovery.

Gear explained that he led the adventurers to believe that Ratebourne was the spy because in the future the Templar would become a danger to the party and to Tyr. Now that Gear had this direct communcation with the party, it requested that they kill Ratebourne, to prevent this from happening. It also requested that they no passon information of Gear to anyone.

At the end of the day, the party reported back to Tithian on their findings. They would journey to The Black Sands to look for Slither and that there was no informant.

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