Wednesday, 19 October 2011

Chapter Seven: Homecoming - Session 48 - Unholy trinity part 1 of 3

Connal Ragnirsson - Jarecki
Jarod - Jacek
Ren Howl - Adrian
Steven - Leon

Bartender - and former knight of Helm
Druj - an ogre millman and resistance champion
Hieronymus - a druid

Heroes chose Cloister of Healing dove ruins as a place of return. The hid cylinder in a one of a traps and set out to investigate state of things. Bartender the had spoken years before revealed that Averwest had fallen on hard times. Soon after party's venture into catacombs,  plaque eaten crops and famine began. Chauntea's priest were unable to stop it and soon people turned to older cults, that provided healthy wheat. Winters became harsh and harsher, trade faded and internal struggles began. Some villages like Lakhell had been lucky and disappeared from peoples minds, other fell victim of raids. Soon civil war raged on, warred between princedoms, cities even neighbors. Forests became dark and brooding, populated with vicious animals and beasts.

After years of turmoil, thee powers emerged: straw God situated in the center of island. Consisting verdant lands, including Appleshade, it paid homage to lord of fields, scarecrow, pagan deity of vicious agriculture. South and west was under rule of Bane'church. It's priests came with amnish traders, soon eradicated them and installed iron fist tyranny. North fell under influence of Dominator, mysterious figure hailing from over the mountains and forsaken land there. He claimed right to rule Averwest in name of it's salvation.

Heroes decided it is time to act. Knowing that spellcasting is forbidden and somehow detectable, they took their chances and next day teleported to Konarch and hid cylinder next to portal, leading to Icewind Dale. After inspecting state of affairs there, the were downtrodden. An old and crazy druid was presumably dead, his circle devastated. Legats, the emissaries of Dominator, ruled village with fear and terror, everybody was suspicious of each other. Knowing that cylinder of Nether was as beacon of light in darkness, heroes decided to strike home and re write laws of Averwest's magic. Whole process took a week during which Steven studied arcane texts and altered them with Connal's help, while Jarod and Ren stood vigilantly on guard. Finally day had come and inscriptions were ready, cylinder of Nether was spun one more time and Wave around island shook violently. It's laws of magic was altered and disconnected from Mystra's essence. Heroes sank Cylinder deep in stone and caved-in passage. Then they teleported to Tristor, to finally go home.

Outside of town the paid visit to Druj, an ogre they saved fifteen years ago. He revealed that hard times had befallen on those, who live under Bane's rule but he was able to play both sides. At glance he was millman that co-operated with rules, but secretly he kept stash of food to help villagers survive cold of winter. He gave heroes shelter and food, and before sunrise party moved on, crossing borders of Straw God's dominion.

Land was indeed verdant, each field guarded by scarecrows and huge mulches. There were dark and brooding atmosphere around them, like abundant crops were paid with terrible price. Guardians' eyes seemed to follow heroes, so at first opportunity the stepped into shelter of Hyreonymus' Groove. Soon the made a camp and when fire was lit, a figure appeared. It was a stag, big and bold, that for some reason seemed like one, the had freed from trap years ago...

It was an old druid himself. He allowed heroes to camp in his woods in times of need, revealing it was one of the rare places free from blight of monsters of darkness. He proved true bartender's and Drujs' story but wasn't able to tell what has happened outside of his groove. So heroes slept under canopy of leaves and prepared themselves to homecoming.