Red Hand of Doom

The Return of Lady Dagger
01/20/2013

The Heroes of Drellin’s Ferry returned to the town on the road to the Hammerfist Holds. On the way, they were joined by Elkantar, who had been searching for information on any other surviving Keepers of Eth. Drellin’s Ferry, as promised, was dark and evacuated. The only sign of habitation was a small group of tieflings clustered outside Jarrett’s Sundries, where the heroes had hoped to stock up on supplies and possibly spend the night. Rudely warned them off by the tieflings, Cyress, Elkantar, Thistle, and Tirah pretended to be just passing through while Frug snuck up on the tieflings from behind and blasted them with a psychic mote.

Joining the tieflings in battle was Cyress’s old nemesis, Lady Dagger, who had been in her store collecting something. Unlike her tiefling thugs the heroes had encountered previously, these seemed to be made of stronger stuff, some even possessing magic. Nevertheless, the Heroes of Drellin’s Ferry prevailed once more, though the slippery Lady Dagger herself managed to teleport to safety and escape again. Captured was another female tiefling, from whom the victors learned that she was part of the Fell Court, a group dedicated to restoring the ancient tiefling empire of Bael Turath. To this end, they are searching for the lost dwarven city of Glitterhame, whose riches and arms might allow them to do just that. It seemed that Lady Dagger had returned to her store to gather more of the arcane portal tiles linked to that fantastic fortress.

XP (Cyress, Elkantar, Frug, Thistle, Tirah): 480
Next session: 02/24/2013

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The Battle for Skull Gorge Bridge
01/06/2013

Having taken Vraath Keep, the victors returned to Drellin’s Ferry, which they found preparing for evacuation. In the wake of an attack by the blue dragon Ozyrrandion, the town council decided to evacuate the population to the city of Brindol, which recently sent representatives from their elite Lion Guard through Drellin’s Ferry on a diplomatic mission to recruit help from the Hammerfist Holds to defend Brindol against the seemingly inevitable Red Hand assault.

The Heroes of Vraath Keep agreed with Teyani Sura, leader of the group of Lion Guardsmen, to accompany their wagon to the Hammerfist Holds. Sura suggested that disabling Skull Gorge Bridge should slow the Red Hand horde considerably, so the companions returned there. Sneaking under the bridge and shrinking support stones from below, Thistle caused the bridge to collapse, cutting off half of the Red Hand forces defending the bridge, as well as forcing the approaching horde to find an alternative route to Elsir Vale. However, Ozyrrandion’s withering lightning blasts caused the Heroes of Vraath Keep and Skull Gorge Bridge to retreat to the Witchwood.

XP (Cyress, Frug, Thistle, Tirah): 712
Next session: 01/20/2013

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The Battle for Vraath Keep
12/02/2012

Having tracked down Narn, the lone surviving Drellin’s Ferry watchman that had fled the battle, Thistle brought him back to camp, where interrogation of three hobgoblin prisoners was underway. One of the hobgoblins offered to escort the attackers into Vraath Keep under the guise of prisoners, but they decided not to trust the hobgoblins. They scaled the fallen dragon and spent another night in the clearing, despite Narn’s warnings that the enemy now knew their location and was being given time to gather reinforcements from Skull Gorge. Thistle killed two of the hobgoblins, and the third was sent back to Drellin’s Ferry at the point of Narn’s crossbow.

The remaining attackers continued to Vraath Keep, where they snuck in through a rent in the south wall. After a pitched battle with Red Hand goblinoid forces led by a minotaur named Commander Karkilan and a bugbear called Wyrmlord Koth, the heroes of Drellin’s Ferry emerged victorious. In the ruined keep they uncovered a Red Hand banner and a battle plan given to Wyrmlord Koth, whose job was to scout out nearby towns in preparation for the horde’s arrival.

XP (Cyress, Frug, Thistle, Tirah): 1,031
Next session: 01/06/2013

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Clash of the Titans
11/18/2012

Having completed his mission on the Prime Material Plane, Shrakk bid farewell to his rescuers and departed for planes unknown. The others returned to Drellin’s Ferry to warn the town of the gathering army. Such a large force could only approach via the Dawn Way, passing Vraath Keep along the way. Speaker Wiston committed three squads of militia, under the command of Captain Anitah, to help the heroes take the keep. They also tracked down the old hill giant, Warklegnaw, whom they recruited to the cause with the assistance of Gausler, a half-orc brewer that offered to interpret for them.

Making camp in the Witchwood in preparation for a morning attack, this large group attracted the attention of the Red Hand. Quickly dispatching a watchman guarding the camp, goblin riders on worgback descended upon the sleeping soldiers. The white dragon swooped down from the sky to wipe out most of the humans in one icy breath. The remainder were swiftly battered aside as the dragon tussled with Warklegnaw, who managed to defeat the beast only with his dying breath – as the dragon fell, it unleashed one last plume of icy cold from its gullet, freezing the giant forever.

In the aftermath, the rest of the Red Hand forces were routed, though the Drellin’s Ferry militia were practically wiped out.

XP (Cyress, Frug, Thistle, Tirah): 566
Next session: 12/02/2012

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Cinder Hill
11/04/2012

Returning victorious to Drellin’s Ferry with the eight rescued children, the companions turned over two captured Crimson Tiger kidnappers to the town authorities – Kull the dwarf and a human named Ulreth. A celebratory feast was held in the heroes’ honor at the Green Apple Tavern. It was there they were congratulated by Sertieren the Red, an elderly halfling wizard, who agreed to research a mysterious figure from Thistle’s past called the Lion.

In the morning they headed to the old toll house to observe the interrogation of the prisoners, only to discover Ulreth dead in his holding cell. He was emaciated and appeared to have fallen victim to a wasting disease, but Tirah noticed two minute pinpricks in his neck, from which he was apparently drained of blood. The interrogation of the terrified Kull went forward, and they learned that the dwarf was hired to smuggle the kidnapped children through Drellin’s Ferry in barrels of apple cider to Lady Dagger’s hideout, where they were kept until they could be delivered to the Crimson Tigers. Then he traveled to their Zelbross hideout to collect payment.

Hearing the heroes’ report about the hobgoblins at Vraath Keep, Speaker Wiston decided that the town guard should attack the Red Hand forces to put a stop to the raids on Drellin’s Ferry. Cyress, advised him against this, supported by his companions, who felt that the guardsmen would be overwhelmed. They asked for a few more days to gather information, and set out to follow Gnash the ogre’s invitation to “where the Witchwood meets the Wyrmsmoke Mountains.” A large stone bridge crossed a ravine called Skull Gorge at this point, used to facilitate travel and trade between Elsir Vale and Nentir Vale to the north. They found the bridge occupied by more Red Hand forces, including hell hounds and a blue dragon named Ozyrrandion. Rather than confront them directly, the heroes bluffed their way past the bridge, pretending to be mercenaries seeking to join the Hand. The hobgoblin commander at Skull Gorge Bridge directed them further north along the Dawn Way to a Red Hand encampment at Cinder Hill.

Reaching Cinder Hill by nightfall, Elkantar’s darkvision could make out numerous campfires and creatures dotting the hillside, including some non-humanoid shapes. He came across Shrakk crucified on a nearby tree, and the githzerai confirmed that this was a Red Hand encampment, hundreds if not thousands of goblinoids reinforced by giants and dragons. He was on a mission to find the red dragon Abrithiax and determine why Tiamat’s dragon armies had been mobilizing, and he tracked Abrithiax to Cinder Hill, where the Hand tortured him and left him for dead as a warning to anyone entering Elsir Vale from the north.

XP (Cyress, Elkantar, Frug, Thistle, Tirah): 300
Next session: 11/18/2012

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Bandit Hideout
10/21/2012

Having fled Vraath Keep and rested up in Jorr’s now-vacant cabin, the heroes decided to make for Zelbross, the ruined Nerathi outpost where Kull the dwarf was supposed to deliver a “shipment” to the Crimson Tiger bandits. On their way out of the Witchwood, they passed through old giant territory and noticed a previously abandoned steading emitting smoke. In it they encountered Warklegnaw, a venerable hill giant roasting a wild boar. Despite a language barrier, Warklegnaw took a liking to the party, particularly Tirah, who made a poultice to ease the giant’s aching back.

Reaching Zelbross, the companions routed the Crimson Tigers and rescued eight children kidnapped from Drellin’s Ferry.

XP (Cyress, Elkantar, Frug, Thistle, Tirah): 580
Next session: 11/04/2012

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The Witchwood
10/07/2012

Reporting their success to the Drellin’s Ferry authorities, the companions were told that Jarett and Kull would be apprehended if they were ever seen in town again, and that Jarett’s Sundries could be used as a base of operations until it could be auctioned off in accordance with local law. Shrakk left the party to set off on his own, wishing the others luck in finding the lost children but explaining that he must continue his mission here on the Prime Material Plane. A search of Jarett’s Sundries revealed a letter to Lady Dagger from the Crimson Tiger bandits, stating that “the shipment” had been received and that she should send Kull to Zelbross for payment. Cyress and Elkantar had both heard local lore about Zelbross, a ruined Nerathi outpost on the border of a large swamp called the Blackfens. Instead of following up on the bandits, however, they set out through the Witchwood toward Skull Gorge, to where the hobgoblins had invited Gnash the ogre.

Their first stop in the Witchwood was Elkantar’s new home, the settlement of the druidic circle known as the Keepers of Eth. As they approached the site, they began to discover the bodies of fallen hobgoblins and druids, which increased in frequency as they got nearer. They arrived to find the druids’ wigwams burnt and not a single druid left alive.

The only other sentient inhabitants of the Witchwood Elkantar knew of were Jorr, a reclusive woodsman, and perhaps scattered survivors of a tribe of hill giants called the Twistusks, most of whom perished a little over a hundred years ago fighting the forces of Vraath Keep, a small castle that had been abandoned ever since. Elkantar sought out Jorr at the woodsman’s cabin, which he found ransacked by more hobgoblin troops professing allegiance to the Red Hand. Next it was decided to check out Vraath Keep, which was found to be abandoned no longer, housing Red Hand goblinoids, worgs, a minotaur, and even a white dragon.

Confronted with this overwhelming array of foes, the heroes retreated into the Witchwood to plan their next move.

XP (Cyress, Elkantar, Frug, Thistle, Tirah): 392
Next session: 10/21/2012

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Lair of Shadows
09/23/2012

Early the next morning, a knock sounded at Cyress’s door. It was Norro Wiston, the town speaker for Drellin’s Ferry, who requested the companions’ help with the hobgoblin problem. He was accompanied by Soranna Anitah, captain of the town watch.

The investigation began with the missing children, believed kidnapped by the hobgoblins. Ilyana, the half-elven mother of one of the more recent victims, a boy named Karel, said that he disappeared a tenday ago after she had sent him into town for supplies to a store called Jarett’s Sundries. Thistle spoke with some cows along the way, and was advised that Karel often strayed from the main trail to climb a particular row of trees. Near these trees, the investigators uncovered what appeared to be Karel’s black vest, in which Ilyana had said he was dressed the day of his disappearance. Thistle’s displacer beast, Blink, tracked the vest’s scent to the door of Jarett’s Sundries.

Jarett, the proprietor, was an attractive tiefling woman that professed she knew Karel, but didn’t see him that day. While she was speaking, a scarred male tiefling also entered, apparently a “friend from out of town” come for some gathering. This seemed strange since, according to Captain Anitah, Drellin’s Ferry seldom sees tieflings other than Jarett, and now Cyress had encountered two more in as many days.

It appeared to be collection day for Lady Dagger’s tieflings, as Captain Anitah was soon alerted to a visit by the protection racket to the local livery stable run by Delora, a elderly dwarven woman, who reported that five tieflings had come to collect their payment. Frug found footprints that took a winding path between buildings to an abandoned corner of town, where crumbling tenements still attest to a time before the fall of the empire when Drellin’s Ferry had a larger population.

The cellar of one of these ruined homes turned out to be a hideout for the tieflings. Leading them was Jarett in a hooded cloak, Lady Dagger herself, accompanied by Kull the dwarf. Nearly at the cost of Cyress’s life, they were defeated, though Lady Dagger and Kull managed to escape. In their lair were some mysterious arcane tiles fashioned to create a portal to the lost dwarven city of Glitterhame, though several tiles needed for this effect remain lost, and a large and filthy cage with the remains of children-size clothing and a message scratched on the wall: “Save us please. We are bing sold as slaves! They say they are brining us to the crimson tiger bandits.”

XP (Cyress, Frug, Shrakk, Thistle): 682
Next session: 10/07/2012

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Red Hand of Doom
09/09/2012

The drow druid Elkantar was returning to his druidic circle, with whom he had no contact for several weeks. With him, as usual, were his wolf, the gnome psion Frug, the pixie Thistle, and her displacer beast. Walking along the Dawn Way toward the Witchwood, they encountered another pair of travelers – a deva priest named Tirah and a githzerai monk called Shrakk, who began traveling with them for safety. About two hours away from Drellin’s Ferry, the last settlement before the Witchwood, the combined group decided to investigate some strange voices just off the road.

The voices were coming from inside a small cave, guarded by a squad of hobgoblin soldiers, who warned the companions off. They continued toward the soldiers threateningly, however, and battle ensued. They were joined by a man that had been creeping up from the other direction, having been surreptitiously traveling under cover of trees. He wielded an ornate, beruned sword that blasted the hobgoblins with arcane energy, which seemed to surprise even its wielder. The appearance of this unexpected ally might have been a relief if it weren’t for the cave’s inhabitant, who now revealed himself.

It was an enormous ogre, ten feet tall, brandishing an uprooted tree trunk as a weapon. He may not have been allied with the hobgoblins, but he was definitely ready to defend his home. Despite his huge, thrashing club, however, the companions and the stranger with the sword managed to defeat all the hobgoblin soldiers and surround the beaten ogre. His name was Gnash, and he had been approached by the soldiers with an offer of gold, guts, glory, and girls if he would help something called the Red Hand to destroy “the humans.” They told him to go to where the Witchwood met the Wyrmsmoke Mountains if he agreed.

The swordsman introduced himself as Cyress. Keeping his agenda to himself, he nonetheless accompanied the others to Drellin’s Ferry, where they reported their run-in at the cave to the local watch and found lodging at the Old Bridge Inn. Speaking with the locals, they uncovered the following information:

• Hobgoblins have been harassing travelers on the Dawn Way for several weeks. This has caused traffic and trade to dry up.
• Some children have gone missing from Drellin’s Ferry, and the hobgoblins are suspected.
• Someone called Lady Dagger is running a protection racket in town, always sending tieflings to collect payment.

XP (Cyress, Elkantar, Frug, Shrakk, Thistle, Tirah): 330
Next session: 09/23/2012

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Welcome to your Adventure Log!
A blog for your campaign

Every campaign gets an Adventure Log, a blog for your adventures!

While the wiki is great for organizing your campaign world, it’s not the best way to chronicle your adventures. For that purpose, you need a blog!

The Adventure Log will allow you to chronologically order the happenings of your campaign. It serves as the record of what has passed. After each gaming session, come to the Adventure Log and write up what happened. In time, it will grow into a great story!

Best of all, each Adventure Log post is also a wiki page! You can link back and forth with your wiki, characters, and so forth as you wish.

One final tip: Before you jump in and try to write up the entire history for your campaign, take a deep breath. Rather than spending days writing and getting exhausted, I would suggest writing a quick “Story So Far” with only a summary. Then, get back to gaming! Grow your Adventure Log over time, rather than all at once.

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