Iron Kingdoms

Episode XI: Prince Reese's Errand
Ambushing the Ambush

Charles, and Treadle chilled with the Prince of Cygnar. They celebrated his return at the capitol with the rest of the country’s nobility. Charles met up with his ex-wife, Delilah, and her new husband, a Cygnaran Duke, while Treadle mingled with the guests.

There was intrigue afoot. Prince Reese asked the PCs to investigate if any nobility knew about arms smuggling in and out of Cygnar. They nosed around and found an illegal shipment was on its way into Caspia that night. To make matters more complicated, a group of brigands planned to intercept the smugglers, ambush them, steal the shipment, and sell the weapons to to Menite dissidents in Southern Cygnar.

Prince Reese immediately put Charles and Treadle in charge of a crack team to intercept the shipment, ambush the ambush, and then arrest the entire bunch.
Ambush
Their operation was a success. They killed nearly all the brigands and saved the entire shipment, turning it over to the Prince.

After reading over the report, the Prince commissioned Charles and Treadle to find the source of the illegal shipments. The intelligence gathered from the ambush pointed them toward the wretched hive of scum and villainy that is the
Five Fingers of Ord.

The party of Charles, Jill, Treadle, Amelia and Delilah reach Five Fingers. They checked in at the “Hanging Maiden” on Bellicose Island at around 4 pm. By early evening they had ran afoul of Madame Voodoo. She ambushed them in their room at the Hanging Maiden. The dread necromancer had summoned a half dozen dragonspawn and her giant “Fist of Doom” crashing down from a thunderhead cloud. Things would not end well.

Just then, Hope Illyria and Vladimir landed on the bridge between Bellicose Island and the mainland. They spotted the giant black fist smashing down on the inn and figured that was the most likely place to start looking for Charles and Treadle.

By this time Voodoo was finishing what she came for: Both Delilah and Amelia were dead, she had claimed Delilah’s soul as a thrall, and whomped on Charles with her dragonspawn. As the Agent and Paladin ran up the Necromancer dissapeared into the night.

Charles and Treadle took Amelia’s body to the nearest church of Morrow. The party got another room at a different inn and held out for the night. The next morning a messenger from the Priest of Morrow arrived with surprising news: Amelia was not dead.

Charles raced to the church. Inside, his daughter was alive and well. The priest explained what had happened: Several hours after they had left her with him, he was preparing to imbalm the body. As he prepared to cut her open, she awoke in front of him with a gasp and a start. He was very startled. Miraculously, her body had healed from the damage done the night before. As she recovered, he immediately went about researching how someone could be miraculously recover from death. There was only one answer: Amelia was a Harbinger, a special being sent from Caen to bring about the end times. As a Harbinger, Amelia can only be killed by dragonfire or a deity – of which Voodoo is niether, leaving Amelia alive. Charles was relieved and soon thereafter got into an argument with his daughter about why her mother (his ex) was killed, and about which parent was a better role model, and why she has a bullet in her shoulder, and why he never came to her 16th birthday …

Later that morning, Hope revealed she and Vlad were on a mission to investigate the “Old Colossal” – a relic from the Orgoth war that has been rusting away on the beach of Captain’s Island. Th party decided to pursue this venture …

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Session XII: Ghost Stories
In the Shadow of the Colossal

The party discovered the husk of the Old Colossal sitting on the northern beach of Captain’s Island. The silent image of a Dragon was “guarding” the entrance, the party was not fazed. The party was ambushed by Tatzylwurms. The party fought through them. There was creepy music in one direction and doorway leading another and the party split up.
Tatzelwurm
Charles and Hope discovered a room inhabited by a signing ghost. The spirit was of a dead queen watching over the corpse of a gunfighter. On the corpse were two pistols. The pair bore an engraving: “The Quickening”. Charles took them.

The other half discovered a “Blue Hole”.
Blue hole
Treadle was the first to dive into the blue hole with Vlad next behind him. At the bottom of the blue hole they discovered the corpse of a strange being. It was in a suit of armor and looked to be as old as the Colossal. The two swam further in and emerged from the water to discover an alien ship buried beneath beach and the Colossal.

Within the ship the party discovered a set of ancient transmissions, recorded during the Orgoth Wars, from the perspective of the Orgoth. They also discovered a guide, a clockwork fairy-woman named “iVVI”.

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Episode XIII: Don't Drink the Kool-Aid
Madame Voodoo's Most Recent Death

Episode XIII
The party emerged from the Colossal at dawn. Heading back toward the inn, they noticed Death Cultists walking about in daylight and acting strangely (normally, death cultists only come out at night). The party investigated and followed a pack of cultists to Hospice Isle.

Death Cultists are a stupid lot and easily fooled. Hope and the others were able to easily con them into giving up their plot: All cultists in Five Fingers were gathering for a ritual to summon and be consumed by the Devourer Wurm. Unknown to them, Voodoo was poisoning them so she could raise their dead bodies as her thralls – which is exactly what happened. The PCs came upon Voodoo as she was raising 1000 dead cultists as her zombie slaves. A good old fashioned melee ensued.

Charles and Vlad created a barrier of gunfire around Amelia and Via, while Treadle deftly shadow-jumped from crowd to crowd, cutting down one undead after another with his pistols. Hope and Jill merely pulled out their blades and plowed their way forward. The two swordwomen were the first to reach the necromancer.

After cutting down dozens of death cultists, Hope missed Voodoo with all four attacks. Unfortunately for Voodoo, Jill did not miss. The Lamia fighter tore the party’s nemesis to shreds with her scimitars. Voodoo was dead.

Or was she …
Dark queen

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Episode XIV: The Rat King
Orgoth Weaponry, Treadle the Confidence Man, Giant Jill and Madame Voodoo's Hand

Capt. Oreo took Charles, Treadle, Jill and Via to Bellicose Island, the territory of Crime Boss Jannish “The Rat King” Riordan. Information led them to believe Riordan was the middleman responsible for smuggling illegal arms into Cygnar. After a few “Gather Info” checks on Bellicose Isle, they were led to the Grande Stevedore Union …

Treadle conned Stevedores Thomas and Bobby he possessed a large store of Orgoth weaponry he needed moved illegally. Bobby was the unofficial union head and link to the criminal underground. Bobby hooked Treadle up with “Dorn and Ferguson Law Offices” to get the proper paperwork forged.

A few more Con Artist checks and Treadle (with Jill and Via) is inspecting the latest smuggling shipment from the Schare Isles. Meanwhile, Charles was sneaking into Dorn and Ferguson’s (with the help of Anderson Vaara and Aldon Isleson) to get the paperwork to prove it all to the prince. Then Charles tripped a magical alarm, alerting the Stevedore’s to investigate the Law Office.

The Stevedore’s discover the break-in but not the felons, so Bobby lost his trust in Treadle, Jill and Via. He brought all three to his boss, The Rat King.

Riordan arrogantly began to question the party.
“Why are you so interested in arms smuggling?”
“Do you really have access to Orgoth weaponry?”
“Why is my friend’s law office broken into while you inspect my latest shipment?”

Unfortunately for Riordan, it was just then that the necklace around Jill’s neck began to do strange things to her brain …

Jill was now possessed by the dead hand of Madame Voodoo hanging from her neck. The Lamia flew into a rage, cast enlarge on herself, and began murdering every person within striking distance. The henchmen were slaughtered, Riordan slipped out the back and the PCs were left to deal with the enraged snake-lady.

To the terror of the Five Fingers common folk, Jill burst onto the street in full snake form and twice her size. She bullied her way through the crowds in a bee line fore Charles and Amelia, who were casually making their way down the street.

Seeing his old friend in such a state with a murderous look in her eye, Charles quickly assessed the situation. He cast telekinesis, aimed it at the dead hand, and relieved Jill of her possession by telekinetically ripping the hand off her neck.

Meanwhile, Treadle was tracking Riordan. The Rat-King snaked his way through the back alleys and side streets to the Lord’s District. Here, Riordan dropped the carriage of a crime boss and took on the airs of a nobleman about town. He casually made his way to a day party at the Duke of Anjou’s summer house.

Treadle took note of all he saw, then went about corning the crime boss. There were a few terse words and Riordan informed Treadle that if he or his friends ever returned to Bellicose Island they would be hunted down and killed.

That evening the party quietly slipped out of town and back to Evenport …

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Episode XV: Awakening the Sleeper
Lord of the Feast

It’s all Via’s fault.

Part I – Journey to Salt Lake Vale

The party returned to Cygnar and reported on the Rat King’s smuggling operation to Prince Reese, who rewarded them greatly.

While the Treadle, Charles and Jill were partying and intriguing in the Cygnaran court, Via spent her days at the Caspian library, researching the Iosan exodus. After three days of searching (and a lot of Gather Info and Search checks), she located a map and a legend: “The Codex of the Willow” was locked away in an Iosan temple located in the Ordic hinterlands. She gathered the rest of the party (Charles, Jill, Treadle, Via and the Margrave of Vilmaer) and set off to follow the map.

The party journeyed deep into the Ordic hinterlands. As they traveled, Treadle picked up they were being followed by the Retribution (goggle-guys). Treadle and Charles commented on how many they had killed, and everyone kept walking. They stopped briefly at the Margrave’s Mansion, where they met up with Ben and Steve. A group of druidic cultists had begun habitating the mansion since its abandonment after the Margrave’s official death. The party investigated. A baby’s skeleton was arranged like a shrine in the crib in the nursery. People had been sleeping on the floor. Then, a mysterious druid named Orion showed up.

Orion asked the party why they were there, they didn’t say. They asked him why he was there, he said it was his forest and the house was home to some of his followers. Orion again prodded them to their intentions, Via and Charles said little. Orion left. The party moved on.

Salt lake vale 2

Several days later they finally arrived at the Salt Vale Lake. They searched the valley all day and found nothing. Frustrated, they made camp.

The next morning Via was gone.

Part II – It’s all Via’s Fault

Charles, Treadle, Jill, Ben and Steve launched into the woods following Via’s trail. They found her on the ground before a tall granite obelisk. She was clawing at the earth with her bare fingers. She was unresponsive to them so they neutralized her and began digging around her claw marks. They found a coffin made of stone, twice the size needed for a human. They pried it open to find it was filled with old leaves. Jill pushed over the obelisk. Nothing happened. They rolled search checks. Nothing. They took 20 on the search checks. Nothing. Then a brownie came up from the forest and bailed them out. He told them to search the coffin, where they found a black marble. The brownie ordered them to draw a circle around where the Obelisk used to stand. Then a beam of sunlight showed them …

… a (magically) hidden clearing with another puzzle involving stones and sunlight. The PCs eventually stumbled onto the solution and uncovered the Iosan Temple. Two stories tall, made out of giant slabs of stone perfectly balanced against each other, with 20 ton doors that opened to the push of a finger, the temple was a marvel of physics. Inside, there were ancient runes, a library of Iosan history from before the exodus, and a shrine built in the middle of a pool of clear water. All were perserved by Iosan magic.

Also inside: more riddles …

They deciphered the runes written on the floor, found the secret doors and discovered the faces etched into the pillars whispered to them when they weren’t looking. Finally, Treadle, Via and Charles found a hidden room with an Elvin priestess sleeping on a stone slab. Problem was, Steve had found her first and was about to blow her brains out while she slept. Initiative was rolled, Treadle shot Steve’s gun out of his hand before Steve could pull the trigger. A few words were exchanged. Steve backed off and Via woke up the priestess. The priestess asked Via if she was here to awaken the sleeper. Via said “I think so, I’m not sure”.

The priestess located a stone key which Via used on a key hole located at the bottom of the pool. The whole temple began to shift, the turn of the key triggered something and the stones, once perfectly balanced, began to shift and slide. As the temple stones fell away from each other, the pool of water gave way to reveal a stone stairway leading down into darkness. With nothing but moonlight above them, the party descended.

Below they found a massive tomb with a coffin. As she walked about, Via realized she had dreamed a dream of this very place. Jill and Charles opened the coffin. Inside was a pale and gaunt man, about nine feet tall, dressed in a loin cloth and an elk’s skull. Via said the magic words

… and …

… oops!
She woke up the sleeper which is actually the Horseman of Famine!

Then Poe showed up and said, “Oh no, what have you done!?!” Then Orion & Co (a bunch of druids and Iosan mage hunters) showed up and everybody got down. Orion and Poe flew off after one another. Via wandered off, following the Mookraken. And finally … Steve, Treadle, Ben, Charles and Jill slaughtered everyone else.

And that’s how the end of the world started.

Good times.

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Episode XVI: Three Battles
Death of Lokis, Death of Orion, Irkusska vs. Dragonspawn

Death of Lokis

Steve chased Lokis from Western Cygnar all the way north to the Ikrusskan Capitol. It was a close run affair, with Steve using his boots of haste and infinite stamina and Lokis jumping shadows. However, the magehunter arrived first.

Lokis entered Queen Amelia’s Masnion hoping to open a dialogue with the Irkusskans. However, Handjob and Vlad ambushed the Iosan mid-negotiation by flipping the table on him. Hope, Lincoln and Anton made short work of Lokis’ accomplices while Handjob and Vlad neutralized the master-bladesman by pinning him to the wall with a chair. Steve arrived just in time to help deliver the final blow. Lokis, one of the thirteen hunters of the colorless pool, died in the hallway of Irkusska’s royal mansion.

Death of Orion

Orion

Lokis was dead but not a week when his ally Orion came calling. Like Lokis, the dragon was fresh off the release of the Lord of the Feast. Orion had questions for the Irkusskans; questions about Harbingers, the newly crowned Queen, and why his ally was dead. Handjob and Vladimir were in no mood and made it clear they would not be bullied by a dragon. Weapons were drawn, Orion ripped the roof off the house and the newly minted Irkusskan army charged up the hill to fight the beast. Orion took wing and began strafing the army, bellowing fire down from above. The party stepped out the mansion just as Orion was landing atop a column of infantry and rolling around, crushing them with his bulk.

Then Captain Handjob drew back his short bow and loosed a fateful arrow (UP YOURS! Purple Die!) and struck Orion in the eye with a natural 20. Anton was quick to follow with Evard’s Black Tentacles (Orion was nice enough to bomb his save) and the rout was on. Steve dealt the final coup de grace by climbing atop the dragon and firing both pistols through it’s brain. And that’s how a CR 32 dragon died in one round.

Battle vs. Dragonspawn

Dragonspawn battle

Orion had barely breathed his last when 200 dragonspawn came howling out of the northern wood. The army rallied and Hope led a cavalry charge to counter the horde. Driving her steed full gallop at the enemy line, she stepped atop the saddle and launched herself at the last moment, cleaving a Nephilim in two as she landed. This act inspired the charging cavalry behind her and they broke the dragonspawn line right away. Anton’s warjack Gustav got in on the action. The warjack grabbed two spawn, bashed their skulls together, then rampaged through their line allowing the infantry to outflank the remaining enemy.

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XVII: Sleeper of War
Via's fault, again

Poe requested the party to travel to Evenport to stop the Worm that Walks from causing trouble on Evenport. Hope, Anton, Steve, Ben and Vlad all traveled to the Island city with Handjob and Lincoln providing transport.

They tracked the Worm to the jungle where they rescued the Iosan ranger" La’La’Laue Dya’Dya":http://www.obsidianportal.com/campaigns/quickness/characters/la-la-lau-dya-dya (Call her La’La). Steve was capped by a Death Cultist. Hope infiltrated the Death Cultist temple and made small talk with a giant. Anton, Vlad, La’La and Sehut then stormed the Death Cultist temple and slaughtered all the baddies. Hope gave the giant Madame Voodoo’s real name and the party entered the tunnel beneath the temple.

Turns out, it was another Orgoth station that doubled as an ice prison for the Sleeper of War! The party tried their best to NOT wake up the sleeper. Then Via showed up to do exactly that. The Druid formerly known as Via is now terminally insane. The party gave her a good run but in the end the crazy lady got what she wanted. The Sleeper of War was awoken.

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XVIII: Death of Charles, Resurrection of Charles

The Chimney Sweep walked right into Toruk lair and tried to negotiate with him. This did not end in happiness.

Treadle and Jill went on a long and drawn out side quest to bring Charlie back from the dead. Which they did. Fortunately, no small children were harmed in the process (no thanks to Jill). Capt. Casinni St. Oreo has vowed to never sail with the snake lady again. As a result, Jill and Treadle made a new friend with Capt. Dolly.

Treadle also helped Cygnar blow up a bunch of Cryxian ships, beat off Asphyxious and rescued the Cygnaran port town of Carre Bova.

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XIX: Death and Resurrection of Steve
Lvl. 1 can crit too!

Steve assaulted the death cultist temple on Evenport, killing two guards and wounding a third. The cultists barricaded to door, so Steve slipped around to the north wall where found a secret entrance. He tried and failed a lock pick check, then tried to kick the door in and was duly spotted by the cultists manning the walls. They threw down a torch, and demanded he identify himself. Steve attempted a bluff, “Madame Voodoo sent me.” But they did not believe him. Then a cultist (lvl. 1) shot him in the aorta with a natural 20. Steve bled out and died on the spot.

Steve woke up in a forest. A rabbit was sitting on his chest. Steve and the rabbit studied each other. Then a crazy woman began to talk. “Ioma, is he alive? Did we bring him back from UrCaen?”

The Druid Via had raised him by the light of a full moon. The Iosan Princess was fresh off her first victory against her father’s usurpers and she had a job for the rifleman. Steve’s first assignment was to kill a shadow dragon she suspected was sent to kill her.

Steve had little choice in the matter, due to the Resurrection he was bound to Via. He searched the remains of the battle and picked up its trail. He tracked it into the forest and the dragon few out to meet him. After introductions and a few pleasantries, they fought. Steve was defeated handily. The dragon told Steve his background. Negotiations ensued. Pellangir struck up a deal for Steve to kill him in front of Via. This would allow Pellangir to renew himself and come back to get the Elf later, with her unawares.

Steve told Via he had taken control of the dragon (bluff check). Steve could see she believed him and summoned his partner. Pell landed in front of them, leaned his head toward the pistol, and Steve pulled the trigger. The dragon fell dead. Via was in awe. She gave Steve his next assignment: To capture Amelia (w/ Poe near Mookraken temple) and bring her rival harbinger to her.

Steve met up with Poe. The druid was perplexed by Via’s change in character. The two men traveled back to the madwoman. Words were exchanged, Via commanded Steve to kill Poe. The gunfighter shot Poe right in the chest, doing 100 million damage on a critical shot. Poe grunted, spat out a little blood and responded with an epic storm/earthquake spell. Via’s Eldrich army was destroyed, Steve was knocked cold and Via was blasted into the darkness.

Poe then did Steve a solid by breaking Via’s enchantment on him. Steve rejoined the party and regailed them with this tale.

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XX: Orion's Lair
Searching for treasure ...

The party finally decided to raid Orion’s lair.

Flashback: In death, Orion took the form of a male druid. The party divvied up the loot and Lincoln had the presence of mind to “search the body”. He found a still-green sapling branch hidden in Orion’s boot. With a gather info roll, Lincoln networked to find a monster hunter who hunted near where the sapling came from.

Part One: Landing

Anton, Hope, Vlad, Steve, Charles and Lincoln sailed East along Irkusska’s northern coastline. Lincoln’s Super Sloop dropped them off at an inlet, then snuck back out to safer waters. The party began investigating the valley.

Apparently Toruk or Voodoo had gotten wind of Orion’s death, as a Cryxian raiding party was already searching the valley. The PCs snuck up on a search party of mechani-thralls and pistol wraiths. Anton cast move earth and dropped them down into a pit of acid. Unfortunately, the Iron Lich leading the search survived by casting levitate and teleport.

In related news, the party discovered a Terraph dragon-spawn was tailing them and a Nyss hunting party was watching everything from behind a waterfall on a far cliff. However, everything was cool because Charles had the party covered with Improved Invisibility.

Part Two: Throwing Down

The PCs snuck up on the Cryxian camp. There they discovered the dark elf Hayake torturing a Nyss woman. The party threw down, with Anton leading the ambush. Steve, Anton, Hope, Vlad and Lincoln blasted away at the Mechani-thralls, pistol wraiths and Iron Lich. Jill singled out Hayake and they dueled atop a mountain cliff. Charles took the Nyss woman to the Super Sloop, calmed her down and eventually evacuated her to the Irkusskan Mansion. The PCs were victorious all around.

Part Three: Dragon and Lair

The party searched for the lair entrance before reinforcements could arrive. Steve decided to walk across the surface of the lake (his boots had “water walking”). Steve did not know there was no lake and no water to walk on. It was all a powerful illusion and he had failed the save. He was actually in the middle of catwalk in the middle of a crater, surrounded on all sides by 200 Dragon-spawn.

Steve ducked for cover as a cloud of arrows came down on his head. Then he jumped up and made a mad dash for the exit. Arrows, axes, swords, teeth all assaulted him as he dodged, ducked and shoved his way past 50 dragonspawn to reach the door. Before him stood the biggest Carnivean he had ever seen. So he turned around and ran back.

Fortunately for Steve, there were two things working to his advantage.

1. He had a lot of hit points.

2. Anton had come to rescue him.

Anton flew down the crater, dropped Handsy (mechanikal arm) down and picked up Steve.

Up top, the Vlad, Hope and Lincoln had spotted Cryxian reinforcements rushing across the valley. The party was loading their guns and getting ready to roll initiative when a Cryxian sail barge was dropped from the sky on top of the offending undead. Orion’s mate, Halfaug, had come to play.

Jill came in just the nick of time. She summoned a Sirrush
to fend off the Blue Dragon while they searched for her lair, which they found, in the forest, with her lone surviving baby there for them to take hostage, which they did. Lincoln and Vlad used the baby dragon as leverage to get Halfaug to surrender the horde and fly away.

The End

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