The Heroes of Phandalin

Rivergard Keep
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Our heroes wake up to discover that Phil is missing. After an exhaustive search they decide (or rather hope) that the Druid made her way ahead so they trek to Rivergard Keep. They are met at the gate by the same sort of bandit scum they met on the road previously and despite Thea’s best attempts to butter them up they prove unwilling to let the heroes in to look around.

The heroes manage to break in under duress and eventually make their way to the main keep. They find Goilliver Grimjaw who turns out to be a wereboar and despite a couple of strange Blue fellows who seem the able to turn in to giant water snakes the manage to win the day.

They find a secret passage way…oh and Phil who somehow was kidnapped by the water cultists, who are learned to be worshiping the Elemental Evil power of Water. They follow the passageway to a underground river and decide to row out the 2 miles to a dwarvish looking settlement. There they are met be a huge shark being ridden by a giant blue guy who dissuades them for further intervention. The head back to plan their next move.

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The investigation continues...

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Picking up right were the “action” left off Thea, Ai, and Zook realize that not only is Phil missing, but so is Xenia. Phil, does return fresh and clean and in a new silk dress…oh and reveals that he is actually a woman. She is quickly joined by Xenia who seems not at all surprised by this.

So there’s that…

In the morning the heroes set out for the shallow graves in the nearby hills. There they discover that the bodies of a dwarf, a human in Mirabar colors, another human in rocky armor and yet another human in feathered robes. The robed human has a symbol branded on him somewhat similar to the one on the Rocky armor human.

They continue onto Womford to discover a camp of bandits and strange “wet” folks. In the ensuing fight they learn that one is some kind of priest who almost escapes. On the weird guys they find yet another symbol. Phil guesses that they correspond to Elements:

EARTH (?)
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AIR (?)
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WATER (?)
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The party reaches Womford and Zook (for some reason) is selected as the “face man” to ask the locals where he can find some (stolen) books. This eventually leads him to the keel boat of a strange blue skinned humanoid captain. Things quickly escalate resulting in Zook accidentally sinking the boat and the captain briefly being held hostage and revealing that the books were payment from some “rock-armor” guys who needed to be ferried across the river near Beliard and that he works for a mercenary name Jolliver Grimjaw out of Rivergard keep. He then uses his last misty step to jump in the river and swim away….fast.

Looks like the gang might be headed to Rivergard Keep.

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Things get awkward in Red Larch

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The party arrives in Red Larch in the thick of the evening. They find their way to the Inn called the Swinging sword and decide to take a trip to Haeleeya’s bathhouse and dress shop. While bathing the party begin to explore interpersonal relationships and the idea of a possible burgeoning romance between Xenia and Phil, at least as theorized by Thea.

After a sort-of-date between Xenia and Phil (which included a brief bar fight) The party (somewhat) get to work uncovering some rumors about the lost delegation from Mirabar.
They learn that the delegation was last seen in the village of Beliard and never made it to Summit Hall. That some boat captain in Womford has been selling manuscripts that likely belonged to a historian amonst the delegation and the sudden appearance of 4 shallow graves in the nearby Summit hills.

Before the heroes can get on the trail they have to locate Phil who has gone missing, after an awkward visit to the tailor.

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On to the next thing...

40d139a9107922664cf7e068180ff856.jpgAfter wrapping up things in Wave Echo cave our heroes plus Nundro Rockseeker return to Phandalin. Word spreads quickly about their exploits and the partying begins, especially for Zook. Ai, Phil, and Xenia receive leads from their various faction contacts that something dark may be going down in the Sumber Hills so after a good night’s rest they head off in the direction of the Town of Red Larch.

As the leave the Sword mountain region and head into the Dessarin Valley the are attacked by a pair of Owlbears. The owlbears are quickly dispatched and they resume the journey.

The party rests in the villages of Triboar and West bridge and learn of many disappearances in the region. On the road they are attacked by a gang of bandits who prove to be little threat, however they are accompanied by strange warriors in armor of stone who prove to me a little more of a challenge, when killed the armor falls into dust and reveal a strange brand on their flesh. The heroes arrive in Red Larch in the final night of the journey.

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Wave Echo Cave!!!!

5328ee53a45ab9a6c8954e4df2cafbec.jpgFollowing the instructions of Gundren Rockseeker the heroes find the legendary Wave Echo Cave. Delving into the subterranean labyrinth the party does battle with a score of Ghouls feasting on the bodies of the long dead and more recently dead. Highlights of the adventure include quick execution of a powerful flaming skull, Zook’s out of character deception the lead to the voluntary evacuation of a Spectator, and the discovery of the Forge of Spells itself.

at the end of that cavernous dungeon the party finally meets Nezznar, the Black Spider. The devilish Drow briefly evades the heroes but is rediscovered and assassinated by the swift arrow of Xenia Greywinter. after finding Nundro Rockeeker the party does a quick sweep of the mines to find them silent and still.

What next? Rumors of unrest the the East may spur our heroes to pull up stakes and find a new locale for adventure… we shall see.

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Tying up some loose ends

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The heroes are given the option of heading straight to Wave Echo Cave or resolving lingering issues with the townsfolk. After a brief debate on the subject the party heads out to Wyvern Tor to deal with the reported orc band that had been sighted there.

On the way to the Tor the party makes short work of an Ogre and once they arrive at the Tor the enter a cave and make even shorter work of a sleeping Ogre. Using about as much guile as orcs can the party is briefly trapped in the cave but manage to find escape and finish off the band.

on the cusp of that victory they head to the ruined watchtower at the Old Owl Well. in the courtyard they spy a colorful tent but as soon as the move to investigate a bunch of zombies begin to pour out of the tower.

moving to investigate the party discovers strange tattooed figure in the tent, a necromancer from the faraway land of Thay. He is quickly knocked out by Xenia, which doe nothing to stop the zombies. After being healed by Thea the necromancer proves to be a little hurt by the attack and refuses to deal with the heroes (it seems that if you want to parley with this guy starting the conversation by stabbing him in the back is a bad idea). The wizard makes an attempt to escape and take some parting shots but does not make it out.

Things look grim as the heroes are quickly swarmed by a dozen hungry zombies but with the help of a well timed lightning bolt from Zook the zombies are dispatched.

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Crashing Cragmaw Castle

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After Phil is quickly recruited into the Emerald Enclave by Reidoth the heroes decide to make a quick resupply in Neverwinter before heading to Cragmaw Castle. After much discussion about the merits of cart vs individual horses the party buys a sturdy draft horse and a cart.

With the aforementioned conveyance they make the castle just before nightfall, having only encountered one small patrol of hobgoblins. Arriving at the castle itself our heroes decide that the open front door might not be the best way to make ingress, so the search until they find a hidden door to the rear of the building.

The party shortly discovers King Grol a massive bugbear and leader of the Cragmaw clan. As they tussle with Grol they spy a Drow female attempting to assassinate an unconscious dwarf, Gundren Rockseeker, the patron of the party! Despite being blocked by the massive bugbear the Heroes are able to thwart the assassination and after Grol falls the finish off the Drow, who was actually a doppelganger.

After waking Gundren, who refuses to leave without his map…which could have been anywhere, an Owlbear crashes into the room…and about dozen goblins rally in the outer hall. After a itched battle with the owlbear, a ton of goblins, and a grick the heroes somehow prevail, loot the place and leave with Gundren and the map.

Back to Phandlin to rest up prepare to head to Wave Echo Cave…hopefully.

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oh yeah, I forgot to mention the dragon...

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Our heroes return triumphantly to Phandalin after defeating the Redbrand menace. After depositing the villainous Iarno Albreck to the town jail the party heads to the Stonehill Inn for some much needed rest and to plan their next move. Some of the party meet briefly with Sister Garaelle who tend the shrine to Tymora, she asks the adventurers if they would ask a question of a Banshee who dwells in Conyberry on behalf of the Harpers.

The party has a lively discussion about what to do next, Thea wishes to pursue the many opportunities to the east (the orcs, uindead, the banshee, etc). Zook, on the other hand, posits that they should head north to Thundertree to seek out Reidoth the Druid since he is most likely to know the whereabouts of Cragmaw Castle.

The party sets out at dawn to take the 2 day trek to Thundertree, when they arrive they are met with an eerie sight and a warning. the town is a ruin covered with a thin layer of volcanic ash and just as they head in they see a handwritten sign stating that they should turn around due to “plant monsters AND zombies”, continuing undaunted the party is inevitably attacked by twig blights and zombies (go figure).

After dispatching the lumbering assailants they find the home of Reidoth, who does indeed know the way to Cragmaw castle. He does ask a favor of the heroes, however, that they help him by ridding the town of an unwanted guest…a young green dragon. The dragon is no the only unwelcome guest to Thundertree, there is also a small group of dragon cultists hanging around. to make matters worse to get to the dragon the party needs to pass through a nest of giant spiders. For some bizarre reason they decide that they can do it.

Luckily for the heroes the dragon has a made a meal of most of the giant spiders, so after finishing of the remaining two they make their way to the dragon’s liar. Thanks to some very sneaky magic from Phil he and Xenia remain hidden as Thea does her best to parley with Venomfang the dragon. They manage to get the drop on him and launch some devastating ranged attacks. Thea unleashes a nasty bardic magic insult and Venomfang takes flight and leaves Thundertree.

As the heroes leave the tower they meet the cultists who are none to pleased that the dragon has fled. The party takes a minute to try to understand that beliefs of the dragon cultists, whose ultimate aim seems to be to breed with Dragons. This leave the 2 groups at a philosophical impasse…which of course leads to violence. The cultists are dealt with pretty quickly and the heroes are presented with direction to Cragmaw castle.

Not bad for a days work…

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The end of the Redbrand menace

maxresdefault.jpgIn the cellar of the ruined Tresender manor house the heroes Decide to locate Glasstaff first, who almost gives them the slip but not for the watchful eyes of the more perceptive party members. Glasstaff is subdued but not before summoning the denizens of the Redbrand hideout. Some quick thinking by Han Ai collapsed the one functional bridge over the chasm turning the tables on the small army of gang members and Bugbears that made up the opposition.

The party quickly learns that Glasstaff is none other than Iarno Albreck, a member of the Lord’s Alliance and Sildar’s contact in Phandalin. They learn that he has been working for the Back Spider (revelaed to be a Drow Elf) and amassed this dread gang to create havoc in Phandalin and thwart any would-be-heroes that might be a threat to him.

The Black Spider seeks the Spell Forge so he can create powerful magic items in a bid for power. After an ill advised party split the woodcutters family is rescued and Albreck’s getaway pouch is found. They also make the acquaintance of an abused goblin named Droop who thinks he may, kind of, know the way to Cragmaw castle.

Will the heroes follow the completely unreliable goblin or will they follow up on other leads they have been given? Will they remember those leads…who knows

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The heroes arrive in Phandalin
and there is much to do there...

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Our heroes arrive in Phandalin and learn right away that the town is under siege from a bandit gang known as the Rebrand Ruffians. A plethora of local folks are met:

Toblin Stonehill , Trilena Stonehill, and Pip Stonehill – Innkeeper and family at the Stone hill Inn.

Daran Edermath, former adventurer, runs and orchard. He Sells a horse to Phil and clue’s the party in to possible undead at the old Owl Well. He also tells them about Reidoth a Druid who might be able to direct them to other places they might want to find, he was last seen in the abandoned town of Thundertree.
Qelline Alderleaf, owns a vegetable farm, her son Carp found a tunnel to the Redbrand HQ.

Halia Thornton, the miner’s exchange, offers 100gp reward for the elimination of Redbrand leader, Glasstaff.

Other things learned:
Townmaster’s Hall Harbin Wester is a “fat, pompous old fool” who calls the Redbrands “just a mercenary guild, and not all that much trouble, really.” He wants the Orcs near Wyvern Tor taken out. Sildar Hallwinter estalbishes himself at the Hall as well. Sildar wants to help the Rockseeker brothers find Wave Echo Cave. Sildar wants to continue pressure on the Cragmaw clan, find the Cragmaw Castle, and believes the characters can do so by finding a raiding party in the wilderness. Iarno Albrek, a fellow member of the Lord’s Alliance, disappeared around Tresendar Manor about two months ago.

On the way to the tunnel the party runs afoul of 4 redbrands harassing local citizens and brings them to justice.

Following the tunnel into the Tresender Manor celler, the party find a telepathic beast called a Nothic. Before dispatching the monster they learn that where Galsstaff is, where their prisoners are held and where Bugbears sent by the black spider lay in wait.

Our heroes begin to plot their next move.

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