Knights of Goldenhawk Tower

Skull Puzzle

Quill and Quagmire perform the hand of fate ritual perfectly. The ritual scroll burns away to dust as its magic is released and the spectral hand appears. Quill steps forth and says aloud, “in order to open this door,” Quill points at the door to the north, “which color skull should be placed in the cauldron first?”

Everyone holds their breath as the spectral hand begins to move. It floats gently over to the pile of golden painted goblin skulls and definitively points at the golden pile. Everyone starts to exhale slowly until the spectral hand moves again. Quill’s eyebrow arches in surprise and wee Olliver hides in his master’s beard.

The spectral hand floats over to the purple colored skull pile and definitively points at the purple pile. Quagmire manages a “hrmph” as he clenches his pipe in his teeth. Olliver peeks out from Quagmire’s beard only to hide again as the spectral hand begins to move for a third time. The hand floats over to the black painted skull pile and points definitely at the black skulls.

There is a deathly quiet as everyone waits to see what happens next. The hand begins to move once more and Gozu exclaims, “What in the Hells? Will it ever stop?”

But the hand floats over to Quill and hovers in the air expectantly awaiting another question. Quill obliges,“in order to open this door (he points) what color skull should be placed in the cauldron second?”

The hand responds by floating through the air to once again point at the gold, purple, and then finally the black pile in succession before returning to Quill.

Quill continues, "in order to open this door ( he points ) what color skull should be placed in the cauldron third?

Again the magic hand of fate points to the gold, purple, and black skull piles in succession. Then it fades away to nothing and the divination ritual is complete.

Dorian blurts out, “I knew it. Gold, purple, and black. Those were the colors we saw on the standard of this keep outside remember? It was a bit faded over time but it was clearly a two headed golden hawk upon a shield of purple and black. A very fine code of arms indeed.”

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Interrogation of Lurash

With Quagmire and Gozu covering the closed door, Dorian drags the human female over to the barrels and checks her bonds. The ropes and chains are tight and secure. Shon Val fills his wine glass and leans lazily against the barrels behind Dorian. Quill stands off to the side fingering his sharpening stone.

Dorian crouches down next to the woman and tends to her wounds. He applies a makeshift bandage to a deep cut on her shoulder with a torn bit of her cloak (healing check 19). He then puts his hand on her head and whispers into her ear. Soft melodious words stir something inside her and her eyes suddenly snap open. Dorian takes a quick step back as she struggles briefly against her bonds, testing them, but seems to soon realize there is not escape. Her body relaxes and she shakes her head.

Dorian bows with a flourish of his cloak. “Greetings my dear. It seems you are in a bit of a pickle. My friends here are intent on sending you to your grave.” Shon Val leans in with a menacing look; eldritch flames crackling about his raised fist (intimidate 17). She stares defiantly back at both Dorian and Shon Val, “You fools don’t scare me. Do you know what horrors lie within these walls? If you were smart you would turn around, climb up that ladder, and get as far away from here as you can.”

Dorian smiles, “Now now… Let’s not be hasty here. I don’t want to see you harmed further, but that depends a lot on you.” He pushes Shon Val back and steps forward, offering her a drink from his waterskin. She shakes her head no. Dorian puts the skin away and continues, “Tell me my dear, what is your name?” (diplomacy 26) The woman narrows her eyes and seems to relax a little bit. “My name is ”/campaigns/knights-of-goldenhawk-tower/characters/lurash" class=“wiki-content-link”>Lurash Taloncroft. Why did you come here and kill my friends?"

Dorian shakes his head, “No, no my dear ”/campaigns/knights-of-goldenhawk-tower/characters/lurash" class=“wiki-content-link”>Lurash. I am afraid I am the one asking the questions here. What were you and your people doing here?" [diplomacy 25] She replies, “We serve our master by guarding the tower from brigands like you.”

“Who is your master and what does he want with this tower?” Dorian presses. “My master is a powerful wizard and his plans for this place are his own. I suggest you leave before he discovers you are here.” Dorian glances at Quill who simply nods slightly the fingers on his whetstone still."

“Ah yes, Lurash I am sure your master is powerful indeed, I am sure he will be quite pleased with your efforts to protect the tower.” Lurash frowns and grows quiet. Dorian leans in close, “Where are you and your people from Lurash?”

“We are from Cormyr,” she replies quickly. The slow rasping sound of Quill’s whetstone upon his drawn blade fills the empty air (Insight 26). Dorian shakes his head, “Come now, Lurash, if you are going to make it out of this alive, you are going to have to be truthful with me. I don’t believe for a minute you are from Cormyr. In fact I know for a fact that you are from Netheril. Tell me that I am wrong.” (Bluff 20)

Lurash looks around quickly and then sighs, “Will you set me free if I tell you what I know?”

Dorian shakes his head, “I am afraid I cannot offer you that. However, I can offer you your life. If you cooperate truthfully, we will deliver you unharmed to the authorities in ”/campaign/knights-of-goldenhawk-tower/wikis/brindol" class=“wiki-page-link”> Brindo to stand trial. If you had nothing to do with the attacks there, you should have nothing to fear."

Lurash narrows her eyes, weighing her options. “Agreed.” Quill stops sharpening his blade.

Dorian smiles and offers his waterskin to Lurash again. She drinks heartily this time. Dorian says, “Yes, there we go. I am glad we could make an arrangement. Now who is ”/campaigns/knights-of-goldenhawk-tower/characters/sithian" class=“wiki-content-link”>Sithian?"

“”/campaigns/knights-of-goldenhawk-tower/characters/sithian" class=“wiki-content-link”>Sithian is my lord and master. He is a Netherese shadow mage from the City of Shade in Netheril. "

“Who is Prince Shadar?”

Lurash’s face grows dark and fearful, “Prince Shadar is a Shadovar. He is one of the 12 princes of Shade. He lords over the great Shadar family estates and armies.”

“What is this tower?”

“It was originally the home of a powerful elf wizard and human warrior. They fought in the goblin wars some time ago in this region. The tower was destroyed in a large battle during the beginnings of the first war with the Red Hand of Doom. Giants and hobgoblins destroyed the tower and slew the inhabitants, but a secret crypt remained hidden from them. You have just entered the crypt. There is something here my master wants, but I don’t know what it is.”

“What’s behind this door? Where does it lead?”

“I am not allowed beyond this door. Master Sithian and his Shadar Kai are the only one’s allowed deeper into the crypt.”

“Are there any other attacks planned on Brindol?”

“I don’t know anything about Brindol other than Sithian has made some sort of arrangement with the local hobgoblin tribes. The hobgoblin attacks and dangerous roads have kept folk away from these ruins and left us in peace, until you showed up.”

“Who is the ”/campaigns/knights-of-goldenhawk-tower/characters/sithian" class=“wiki-content-link”>emissary?"

“The emissary is the pseudonym used by Master Sithian when dealing with the hobgoblin tribes. We are all under strict orders not to use our real names or to reveal to anyone that we are from Netheril.”

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Hobgoblin War Band

The battle picked up from the game before right where it left off. The
hobgoblin subcommander was captured and the two remaining archers were
slain. Dorian and Shan Val did a great job intimidating the
subcommander whose name was blubf. Gozu made blubf move all 22 of his
fellow hobgoblin corpses down into the rivenroar keep to prove his
worth to you. From him you learned that they were not with Sinruth but
actually with a clan called the broken fist. A chieftain by the name
of Big Grigbad had come with his clan to join the red hand and Sinruth.

Blubf offerred to join with you or act as an intermediary to parlay
with Big Grigbad who was close by with his remaining force of 10
hobgoblins. At one point the party was considering using blubf to lead
them to big grigbad or perhaps to use him to lead big grigbad into a
trap. I think the party thought that they were too beat up to handle a
hobgoblin chief. In any event Gozu tried to shoot blubf with his bow
but missed. Blubf started to run but Dorian or Shan Val was able to
blast him before he could get away.

Gozu brought blubfs body down into to keep and Olliver raised an
Alarm. A group of hobgoblins were approaching. Everyone hid as they
approached and Dorian yelled out from hiding trying to trick them into
thinking he was with Sinruths band. Just then Gozu wandered out and
Dirian tried to get Gozu to play along with the ruse but was not
overly convincing and in the end fired off a bow shot just like Han
solo on the death star. “situation normal” awkward smile. The
hobgoblins charged in to attack being rallied by their commnaders to
move much faster than the party expected. The fight went real bad
right from the start. With Dorian and Quagmire getting pounded on in
the front lines and Gozu and Quill trapped in the backfield, only Shan
Val was winning the terrain battle as he fey stepped to the top of a
pillar out of harms way to blast hobgoblins from on high with his
eldritch power.

Quagmire used his staff of winter to great effect by escaping from the
hobgoblins that had him pinned down and using it’s frosty effect to
immobilize them and prevent them from giving chase.

Dorian had it tough the whole battle going toe to toe with Big Grigbad
and Crathlorth, the hobgoblin Shaman, without any help. Luckily Shan
Val was able to fey step down and blast them to give Dorian some aid
and distract them. Crathlirth tried to use his force magic to knock
Shan Val off his perch to fall to the hard stone below but he managed
to catch the edge of the pillar by his fingertips and is still
dangling there.

The battle still rages on. You managed to slay a number of hobgoblins
and bloody some others but most of the party themselves are bloodied
and in bad shape. Dorian would probably have gone down if not for
ShanVals distraction and a 1 rolled by Big Grigbad on his last attack.

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The Morning After

The morning after the feast and celebration of your heroic rescue of the prisoners and return of the artifacts to the Hall of Valor, everyone wakes up in the nice small house that Council Member Troyas arranged for you to stay in. Gozu Mendok knocks over some empty bottles of dwarven ale as he stumbles out of bed and rubs his forehead. Quagmire stokes the fire and uses a stray ember to light a freshly packed bowl of the hobbit’s leaf. Shan Val puts on a fresh shirt and uses the mirror to straighten his vest. Quill rolls over in his sweaty sheets, he is running a terrible fever. It looks like the puncture wounds on his arm where the wererat bit him are infected. Dorian places a farewell kiss upon the young lady who quickly slips out of his bedroom and heads for the door.

A short while later there is a knock on the door. It is council member Troyas. The old half elf enters your temporary abode and begins speaking to you in earnest.

“Greetings gentleman. I see you are in varying states of recovery from our little celebration last night. I met with the town council this morning and shared with them the scroll you had recovered from the hobgoblin chief, Sinruth. Although we are overjoyed at your success of your mission, we are deeply troubled by this new development. Although my impression of you gentleman when we first met was less than favorable, you have proved yourselves a valuable asset to this town. The council has voted to offer your group a retainer for your services. I have been authorized to offer you 200 GP up front for a month’s work for the town. You will be welcome to stay in this house when you are in Brindol and all meals eaten at the Gryphon Inn will be paid for by the town. We would like you to return to Rivenroar Keep and hunt down any of Sunruth’s Allies that may remain alive. If you can unravel the mystery behind this emissary fellow and shed any light on who he is or what plots he might be hatching against the town, we will reward you further. What say you? Will you accept our generous offer and help us in this time of need?”

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A Boy Becomes a Man

The party finished clearing out the Ruins of Rivenroar Keep. The Drakes went down easy enough and we finished it off with a minor Demon, four Wererats and another Gnome Arcanist.

You had rescued all of the prisoners alive except for Kartenix, captain of the guard and father to the boy Thurann. You will probably remember that you recovered Kartenix’s body. He had apparently been killed before you arrived at the keep by the ettercaps as his corpse was wrapped in webs. The old man Sertanian identified the corpse and warned you that he was the father of the boy you had just rescued. The party chose to keep the father’s death a secret from the boy.

Things came to a head when everyone was getting ready to leave and head back to Brindol and the boy refused to go saying you needed to go back in rescue his dad. To truth of his passing was reveled and in a heart breaking scene the boy began to cry and ran off into the woods.

The heartstricken boy tears off into the wood as his father’s death penetrates him. Gozu Mendok gnashes his teeth realizing that the boy might alert passing sentries. Issuing a stifled roar, Gozu tears after the little creature, weaving in and out of the copses of trees, he comes to a ridge over the boy’s path and let’s fly an arrow. It finds its mark in the boy’s hamstring. The boy crashes to the ground, writhing in pain. Gozu pounces on the boy, muffles his cries with a piece of leather soaked in mulberry alcohol. “Your father is dead. Running into the wood to sob until Sinrith’s hobgoblins bring more bloodshed to your people will not change that fact. Life is pain; better to learn it while you’re young.” Gozu tends to the boy’s wounds, removes all traces of blood and tracks from the area, slings him over his shoulder and looks around the forest—all remains still as if the forest acquieces to Gozu’s polemic. Gozu flies back to the party, alternating curses for the boy, the hobgoblin and the gods.

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Thurann's Rescue

Well Done, everyone. That was a good game. Dana, the party pressed
onwards and got through 2 difficult encounters with undead creatures.
The first was a viscous battle with the Undead Honor Guard of
Rivernroad Keep – a group of skeletons and ghouls. The ghouls had a
nasty ability to immobilize and then stun opponents. Both Gozu and
Baern took the brunt of that falling prey to it repeatedly. Baern had
a very cool critical hit on one of the skeletons which destroyed it
completely -they have a vulnerability to critical hits. Gozu took a
pounding and Dorian was key in healing him during the encounter to
keep him alive.

The other battle was with a boneshard skeleton, Deathlock Wight, and
some skeleton minions. The boneshard skeleton had a nasty habit of
exploding into necrotic damage when it was bloodied and destroyed.
The deathlock wight was able to make it rise again after it was
destroyed which made a difficult time of things for the party. Phil
utilized Dorian to great effect by using his scorching blast sorceror
ability to blast the unlife out of most of the skeletal minions. Gozu
had the killing blow on the nasty wight by putting an arrow in each
eye socket.

A young boy named Thurann was rescued. He is the son of the Captain
of the Guard, Kartenix (whose dead body you recovered in the ettercap
room). A potentially heart wrenching scene was avoided by Shan Val as
he lied to the boy and told him that he didn’t know where his father
was. Quagmire warned the other prisoners as the boy was brought into
their midst which they perceived as your intention to continue to
deceive the boy. No one spoke of his fathers demise. Quagmire used a
secret scrying pool to figure out that a hostage was being held in the
area beyond the mushroom room. Besides that area there is one
location in the lower levels that has not been explored.

XP = 230 XP Each (bringing everyone’s total XP amount to 2,005 XP –
just shy of the 2,250 XP needed for 3rd level.)

Treasure Recovered:
Staff of Winter – claimed by Quagmire
Rod of Blasting – claimed by Shan Val
Ritual Book of Magic Circle (5th level) – unclaimed
100 GP worth of gems
80 GP in a small box

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The Slaying of Sinruth

The red hand

The party went to the top of the stairs to investigate the spiderweb
room and was attacked by 3 ettercaps. It was a brutal battle with
Baern getting poisoned and stunned and people getting caught in webs.
After defeating the ettercaps, the party uncovered 100 GP worth of
residuum in their lair that Quagmire was very interested in. The party
decided to keep a group collection of residuum to be used to power
rituals. The party went back to take an extended rest because
everyone was beat up pretty bad. After that they went back up past
the spiderweb room to a large room that had 4 hobgoblin warriors, 2
spitting drakes, and a goblin hexer. Again it was tough battle mostly
due to the wily goblin controller who was able to blind Baern and
confound everyone in a vexing cloud. After this battle a young lady
from Brindol named Jalissa was rescued. She took instantly to Dorian
and has been like glue to him since being rescued. She is an acolyte
of Ioun and trained in arcana. She also knows the comprehend
languages, silence, and eye of alarm rituals. A magical instrument
(Fochlucan Bandore) was recovered and claimed by Dorian. The party
safely got Jalissa out to the rest of the freed prisoners at your
hidden campsite. The party decided to use 35 GP worth of the residuum
you just unearthed to perform 2 rituals. Jalissa performed one to
protect the camp site with an eye of alarm doing well creating
darkvision eyes. The other ritual was performed by Quagmire to get a
24 hour knowledge of the goblin language.

The party went back into the ruined keep and stumbled into the lair of
Sinruth himself. Sinruth is the hobgoblin chieftain who led the raid
on Brindol. It was a wicked 5 round battle with the entire party
against just one hobgoblin. He did a lot of damage with full plate
armor and his wicked spiked chain. He was able to use action points
against you and managed to get by Baern and Gozu to punish Quagmire,
Dorian and Shan Val. Siruth used his chain to pull party members into
freezing cold menhirs and knock them prone and stomp on them with his
metal boots. It was pretty nasty. Gozu Mendok had a hell of a time
trying to hit Sinruth with Baern doing the bulk of the damage (Sinruth
had 185 HP) but Gozu had the killing shot with an arrow through his eye.

That was 2 encounters after the extended rest meaning a milestone was
reached. Sinruth was wearing a magical belt called an Ironskin Belt
which was yet to be claimed. Two Brindol artifacts were recovered –
Heroes Gauntlets and the Dragoncrest Helm. Sinruth also had a map of
the area around Brindol showing the town, surrounding roads,
Rivernroar Keep (where you are now) and several locations marked down
as good ambush points. Sinruth also had the following note written in
the common tongue and penned with a careful hand:
Sinruth letter

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