The wind whipped through her hair as Siréne flew high above the island. Her keen elven sight pierced the distance and the scene before her took her breath. The devastation was unfathomable. Thousands upon thousands of bodies, blackened and burned, lay strewn across the land. Magic had consumed them all, and when there were no bodies left it had consumed the land. A huge swath of the forest had been burnt away in their magical storm. Thick pillars of smoke still reached into the sky.
A single tear fell from the witch's eye. In fighting this war would they become no better than their enemy? Did the ends justify the means?
Shaking her head, Siréne made her way back to the ship to join the others. They had preparations to make for the battles to come. She just hoped it wouldn't cost her, her soul.
The night was a horrible event. The party had never rained such destruction before. If only the creatures would have sensed defeat and stopped their crazed push forward.
At the dawning the party once more returned to the boat rest and once again prepare the spells that they would need, but this time they would advance on into the island to find the tower Peri had seen.
Through the day and the following night they waited for the flames to die out and the ghastly smoke to clear. As it was they would most like gag from the stench until they emerged on the other side of the burned swath. Finding a cloth he could wet and wrap over his nose and mouth Ulthok prepared once again to head on to the island.
With the night having shown no signs of the pale undead looking creatures, the party readied their spells and gear and moved forward. As they started across the three miles of fire blackened earth each leather or steel booted step came down upon a piece of burnt wood or bone, the sound like packaged air bubbles being popped. However with each footfall small spurts of ash were disturbed into the air until finally the air around them was if a fog.
The ash from this cloud like a malevolent creature worming it’s way inside armor, underneath clothes, filling boots. Gaining access to everything and anything and before long causing rashes to break out and itching everywhere. However this was not the most dangerous part of this ash cloud as with it gaining access to everything it also gained access to lungs.
The first to realize this were Ulthok and Cor as both began to cough. Being the shortest of the party both knew right away that to continue towards the tower could very well mean the parties death, lungs full of ash instead of air. Motioning to the other party members to follow them, a quick retreat to the beach and their boat was again the smartest course of action .
Though no living foe faced them, a new danger lay before them, a party created fog of life stealing ash.
((DM OOC: Ok yes short post but with so much dead and heavily burnt bodies and woodland the ground covering ash is at least eight inches deep. The question now is how to get around it. Ok next post next Sunday))
Posted on 2016-03-13 at 23:39:01.
Edited on 2016-03-13 at 23:39:47 by TannTalas
Cor thought about how to traverse the ash and it seemed there were two possibilities; teleport past it or walk around it. "Well everyone, looks like there are two good choices for our next step of the journey. We teleport past the ash or we walk around it. My vote is ta teleport and save the walking but what say the rest of you?"
Cor's mind kept going back to the flying creatures at the tower. He knew he had dealt with such before but when and where? Then it came to him. It had been at the temple of Odin in Juzinia when he was just a alter boy. A local man was brought in who claimed he was attacked by eagles with legs the prior day. Ever since the attack he had been feeling miserable but as the second day progressed the pain became almost unbearable. Noone was sure what to do until the elder priest returned late in the day and identified the creatures as Gryph. He said the man was likely infected with eggs and that there was little time left to cure him. Luckily, once the condition was identified a simple cure disease spell restored teh man to good health.
"I know what tha creatures are; Gryph. Not terrible dangerous but I need ta pray for a cure disease spell before we begin our travels."
Lothor listened as Cor listed off their options. It didn't sound like much of a choice. "It doesn't look like we have much choice - I'm not sure walking around is possible. So if the mages will do so, I'd take a ride."
He grimaced a bit as he said the last part. He had grown quite accustomed to the magic users over the last months, but magic was still not his thing. A blade to fight with and the solid ground under his feet - this was what made him comfortable. Still, the thought of being teleported hardly made him blink. Times change it seemed. Or at least old warriors could learn new tricks if the stakes were high enough.
When Cor followed his earlier comments by identifying the bird creatures at the tower, Lothor was pleased. It was always easier to fight an opponent you knew something about. The fewer surprises the better. Still. "Gryph? what else do you know about them? Individually they might not be tough, but anything in numbers can be a problem. Consider the ash we now need to cross. And they are at the tower of the magical cyclops. Don't assume we will be facing only that one opponent."
The party was driven back to the shore once more by the horde of beasts, but this time it was their dead ash pluming into the air. The wet mask Ulthok wore to shield him from the stench was not nearly enough to block the ash.
The party regrouped to figure how the cross the three mile or so of destruction. They could not all fly over but one mage could and then return to cast a teleport and transport them all to the other side.
Sirene indicated she had the spell prepared. “Good plan….. If you could do this and save us the time of have to hike around the carnage that would be wonderful….. We’ll be here when you return,”Ulthok joked.
Posted on 2016-03-26 at 21:45:53.
Edited on 2016-03-27 at 15:18:19 by Odyson
Siréne nodded, hearing Cor's warning. She would take care to avoid the birds as she flew over the island. Sending a trickle of will into her ring, the enchantress rose up into the air. The ground rushed away beneath her as her magical flight sped across the water and onto the island.
With the memory of the burning ash still fresh in her mind, Siréne too care not to draw too close to the ground, lest she stir up another cloud of ash. She flew just beyond the ashen wasteland, taking a moment to learn the land.
Taking in the jungle before her, Siréne took a few breaths. Then, secure in her knowledge of the place, she returned to the boat. Once everyone had made themselves ready, the witch began her spell.
Siréne called to the unseen world and felt it answer. Hand in hand, the fey magic swirled around them all, bending the world around them. There was a sudden shifting, the once physical world became unstable, mutable. For the span of three heartbeats they moved through this. Then, the world became whole again and they found themselves standing not on the boat but at the edges of the island jungle.
((OOC: Casts Teleport))
Posted on 2016-03-27 at 16:53:48.
Edited on 2016-03-27 at 16:54:01 by Nimu
Alyia sat on the ground rummaging through her spell pouch moving spell components around as to make certain items easier for quick access. As Sirene took flight Alyia stood with the group. Alyia linked hand with both Lothor and Cor both, as to no be left behind. Alyia's mind noted that in their travels she'd rarely been so close to either of the men. Smiling softly Alyia noted the size an roughness of their hands compared to her own. Alyia also made a small note that she'd have to complete Cor on his beard, even in the chaos it seemed immaculate. As if on que Xin's voice chimed in chuckling something about dwarven pride, an buying gemmed beard beads as a gift. Xin's chiding as the world solidified around them Alyia realizing she really couldn't let her mind wander in such idleness, but it was so hard not to after being so idle for so long. Alyia drew a small rune on the inside of her wrist with the back of the thumb with a deep breath she renewed her focus, soon they'd be in battle once more.
One moment Cor stood holding hands with his companions on the deck of the ship; the next they were holding hands on the far edge of the ash. Before them spanned a vast jungle that hid who knew what sort of trouble. "Well, we best ta get walking. Trouble will find us as sure here as it will in there. Keep yer eyes pealed and yer weapons ready." Cor knew neither of those reminders were necessary but he had little else to say.
With the party’s first attempt to cross the ash covered beach a failure they returned to the boat yet again. For the course of the rest of the day they discussed a number of ways to proceed finally decided on the use of a teleport spell. With Sirene flying a quick recon of the target area she returned to the ship and gathered the rest of the party to her and mouthed the words of the teleport spell.
Within only seconds the party finally found itself beyond the sea of ash and at the beginning of the surviving forest. Checking gear, weapons, and spells they moved forward and deeper into the thick jungle like forest. After only about a 100 yards into the dark jungle the party found weapons to hand as they found their going blocked by thick vines, large trunks, and twisted limbs. The ground though in most places hard the party could see in others was like a swamp, the pools of watery area’s smelling of rot and creating a humid mugginess that had the party sweating in minutes.
By midday on the first day the party’s clothing and themselves were so drenched in sweat it was as if they were swimming in water, their movement as such slowed. With a calling for a break they rested and almost at once they each noticed within the larger tree trunks openings and debris as if something lived inside. Standing to investigate Rayne moved towards one and peered inside seeing the hole was indeed an opening into a larger crevice leading deeper into the ground.
Her elfin eyesight could see that the medium sized tunnel stopped forty feet within a larger cave like area, the floor covered in many teeth marked bones. From the size and shape of these bones she could tell they were the eaten remains of the creatures that they had killed for days. She could also see that some of the bones had been arranged in one corner and covered in some type of skin, as if to create a crude bed. With a last look into this bone filled cave she moved to sit back by the party who had now each looked into a trunk opening and seen the same as the Elfin Ranger/Cleric. Clearly these empty tree caves were the habitats of the pale undead looking creatures.
With the party now on a higher level of alert knowing there could easily be hidden survivors they moved on into the night. With no way to see the sun the deeper they traveled, the telling of time became difficult. However with the dark of the forest becoming even darker, to the point Lothor, the lone human without any form of night vision, found himself slowly going blind, the party decided to rest for the night. Without a fire hard rations were eaten and guards were set but nothing menaced in the dark and with the dark of the wood becoming able once more for the two humans to see they pushed on. For two more days this pattern went on moving when Lothor could see, resting when he could not. Till finally on the late afternoon of the third they burst out of the mangled mess of a forest to find themselves in a thick tree canopy covered clearing before a large double door of bluish metal set into a wall of stone.
Above them they could hear the cries of many birds as they seemed to slam into the upper level of the trees, enraged at the presence of the party below. Yet none did reach them to attack, the roof of the entwined tree limbs acting as a shield. With Peri’s confirmation that the birds above were the same as she had warned of the party now faced the door knowing before them stood their goal The Tower of the Cyclops...............
(DM OOC: Ok look at that you made it to the tower without a fight. Most likely thanks to you all killing my attack force, no fair!. Anyway you reached the tower without harm and before you is a door what do you plan to do next. Looking forward to your posts this week.)
Posted on 2016-03-27 at 22:59:53.
Edited on 2016-03-28 at 00:20:29 by TannTalas
Rayne coughed as the ashes started filling her lungs, she slowed her breathing and attempted to reduce the amount of ashes she consumed. As they returned to the ship, they discussed their options to reach the tower without cutting through the ashes. She quickly realized they had two options, teleport passed the ash field, or circle around, costing them extra time. It did not take very long for the group to decide that teleportation would be the best course of action.
As they appeared on the opposite side of the sea of ash, they found themselves on the edge of the remaining forest. Rayne quickly checked to ensure she had all her gear intact after the spell. As soon as everyone had checked their gears and spells, they proceeded through the jungle. Shortly into their ventures, they were forced to retrieve their weapons to clear a path towards the tower. Rayne kept her eyes flashing back from all directions as she remained alert to possible dangers.
Drenched and exhausted, the party agreed to take a short break in the mugginess that surrounded them. When everyone settled she stood up and investigated one of the larger tree trunk openings. Upon further inspection she realized the opening was a large crevice leading deeper into the ground. The crevices were in fact the habitats of the pale undead creatures they had previously encountered.
Rayne was on high alert after discovering how close they were to possibly being ambushed by potential stragglers. Lothor began slowing and as a group we decided to rest for the night, praying for her spells. She slept when it was her turn to sleep, and woke up and stayed alert during her shift to keep watch for enemies. For two days, their days consisted of constant walking, until the human was unable to see, then they stopped for a rest. Finally upon the third day, they cleared the thick trees, into a clearing with a large double metal door.
The ranger voiced her opinion of the situation “Since the birds are unable to reach us, I strongly urge us to check out our options before we enter into the tower. We should survey as much as we can, and ensure we are ready to face the possibility of those birds from inside the tower. I think we should take our time and prepare ourselves for potential battles as soon as we enter the tower.”
I Am Not A Thief..........I'm A Master Procurer.....
The teleport had worked and the party found themselves trudging through dense forest growth. The evidence of the living places of those crazed creatures would have over run them had they not been so brutal to the poor things. It wasn’t in the parties nature to just kill like that but it had been necessary.
On the third day they had broached the forest and come to a cover clearing. The sound of crazed birds trying to penetrate the thick foliage above now greeted the adventures. Across the clearing stood the wall of what appeared to be the tower they sought. In that wall were double doors of bluish metal. Could it be that easy, Ulthok felt this was only the next step in a dangerous journey?
From behind he heard the words of Rayne,“Since the birds are unable to reach us, I strongly urge us to check out our options before we enter into the tower. We should survey as much as we can, and ensure we are ready to face the possibility of those birds from inside the tower. I think we should take our time and prepare ourselves for potential battles as soon as we enter the tower.”
“Caution may be a wise thing but those birds will continue until they break through, they may even bring other things with them. There is where we need to go next,” pointing the doors.
Once again sighing heavily, “So it’s time for me to earn my keep again..I’ll go check that door for traps and see if will open. It may be that we once again face tests as we did in Drow Mountain…but we need to get inside ..and as quickly as possible. Lothor I’ll need someone to cover my back in case those birds break through while I am other wise occupied.”
With that the "Master Procurer" carefully made way to the door and began checking for traps and studying the lock.
(If there are traps Ulthok will attempt to disarm them. If there are no traps Ulthok will try to open the door. If the door is locked Ulthok will attempt to pick the lock and then open the door.)
Posted on 2016-04-02 at 22:12:09.
Edited on 2016-04-02 at 22:13:07 by Odyson
As they arrived at the door to what Lothor assumed to be the tower of their quest, it was impossible not to hear the many "birds" above them attacking the foliage. How many legs did the things have? When he was younger he'd had an uncle that really liked drumsticks and at every fall's harvest festival - after the kids of the village had finished their games - he'd make a huge roasted bird to feed the athletes. But because he liked drumsticks so much, he always included extra legs, just sort of tacked onto the side to make a 6 legged turkey. It was odd to be thinking about his uncle John in the middle of a jungle and at the front door of a magical cyclops, but such was the way of it. Looking up to where those 6 legged birds were making so much noise, it was easy to think about uncle John and how he would have wanted to roast the creatures.
The thought made Lothor smile a bit. But the thought that he should not be talking about the drumsticks the star athletes used to get, but rather "would be" getting many years in the future took the smile away. They weren't at this tower in the middle of the jungle to roast a turkey and play some games. This tower was the key to their getting back to the future - and quite possibly bringing the great arch-mage with them as well.
Just as the warriors thoughts took this serious turn, he heard Ulthok ask for assistance in inspecting the door. As he moved ahead with the parties official "trap man," Lothor grinned at the little Halfling. "Sure, I got your back. And if you want, you can sit on my shoulders to see the doorknob." He was, of grinning as he said it, but also inspecting the side of the tower and the door as they approached. Once they got their he would leave the inspecting to Ulthok and simply keep his eyes open for unwanted visitors.
This party of seven heroes had finally reached their goal after hard days of dealing death and three more days of hard travel. Consisting of a single female Half-Elf, a lone male Dwarf, 2 male Humans, 2 female Elves and lastly a male Halfling, race not yet born in this time, the seven found themselves before a large pair of bluish green metal doors. The doors, some 15’ feet high and each 10’ feet wide, were built into the wall of a multi-layered tower, the top hidden above the tree’s. These doors bare of any handles or key holds standing silently waiting.
With Ulthok the parties only thief there was no need to ponder on who would seek out any and all traps. So with Lother by his side he moved forward checking the ground with each step reaching the door unharmed. His eyes locked on every bit of the door he could see or reach he finally found a finger sized hole. With no visible trap, or anything amiss, he took a chance placing a finger within. At once he felt a slight sting as his finger was pricked and a bit of blood drawn out. Slowly a bit of the door became a small panel and shelf with pictures and four discs. The panel, inscribed with four rows of pictures and a fifth row bare, the four disc’s with the same picture as each row.
Clearly here was a test, perhaps the first of many, to gain entrance to the tower standing silently before them.
(DM OOC: Ok look at the picture below the disc’s are the same as each row. 1 Whale, 1 Goldfish, 1 Crab, and 1 Eel. You need to figure out what position each disc must go to match the next picture sequence. Feel free to talk about this in the Q/A and good luck.)
Posted on 2016-04-03 at 22:58:14.
Edited on 2016-04-03 at 22:58:59 by TannTalas
Cor looked at the lock for only a few moments before speaking. "Here is my input on the code. Goldfish moved 6 spaces counter clockwise (cc) on each row. Crab faces straight down as it moves 1 space cc each row. Whale faces left as it moves 3 spaces cc each row. Eel faces left as it moves 5 spaces cc each row."
Posted on 2016-04-06 at 12:39:34.
Edited on 2016-04-06 at 12:41:13 by Keeper of Dragons