When Elements Come to Life

As we walked from the gravesite, we heard footsteps both in front of and behind us. We saw Nar… both in front of and behind us. The Nar in front of us burst into laughter, declaring that Alethra’s standards must have dropped. Aelar told her “just as your bitch ass is about to do”, and knocked a bow.

Quip-Qo ran up to the shapeshifter and punched THROUGH it. It laughed at us, insisting that the standards have gone WAY down, and disappeared altogether. Continuing further, we found a mausoleum that appeared to be open. I constructed a tiny hut, and we rested for the evening.

Quip-Qo asked where Nar had been, who informed us that he searched the village, eventually exploring a large dining hall with multiple dead corpses. He found a symbol of his god, a mysterious cold-blue vile, a very expensive ruby, and a gold vapor bottle. He also came across three men in red robes. He overheard them discussing they needed to report back because “the key had already been found”. One of which had a big attitude with Nar, so he proceeded to execute Orcish diplomacy across the robed figure’s face. They told him that guests weren’t allowed on that part of the island, cast hold person on him, and left. He came across a shrine similar to ours, and got the fortune “Your consequences will also be their consequences”. He fought a red-robed figure, as well as the lady with the gashed face. He was feared away from her, and eventually she vanished.

The next morning, we proceeded into the mausoleum. Kitsune stopped and bowed in front of us, during which we felt inspired. He also dug at the ground, and we found a small cold blue stone. Then, he moved to the side and made it clear that he would not continue further.

The first room contained two doors, one yellow and one blue. We went into the yellow door, and found a large room with a vaulted ceiling sloping upwards as it went away from us. Their also appeared to be ropes connecting large netted sections together. At the opposite end of the room, about 160ft above the ground, we saw a red door. As we made our way across the room, we noticed some skittering shadows, and instantly knew what had created the “nets”.

We began attacking the spiders, shooting them with blasts of force and arrows. I shot a fireball at two of them, blasting one out of the sky, with both of them falling from burned webbing. Quip-Qo punched one, knocking it off the net he was standing on, and lunged off the net after it. Both of them falling to the ground, Quip-Qo repositioned the spider and crushed it beneath him on the dungeon floor. I shot at one with a tunderous wave of sound, blasting it backwards. Unfortunately, the pendulous motion of the spider hanging in the air caused it to swing right back towards me after being knocked back. I quickly moved out of the way, swiping it quickly with my dagger as it passed. Aelor knocked an arrow, and killed the final spider. We looked down on the ground and found that Quip-Qo was safe, as he was in fact already looting some cocoons that fell from the ceiling during my fireball blast. We threw him a rope and pulled him up. He found a chest on the wall across the room, and pulled a bubbling silver potion from it. We continued across the room to the red door, and passed through it.

The next room was a giant octagon made of riveted metal. There was a brown door on the opposite wall. The door behind us closed, and we started to notice the temperature of the room increasing. Kairon shot the key with a ray of frost, and Aelor shot the frosted key off the wall. Quip-Qo picked up the key, which burned his hand immensely. He ran towards the door before dropping the scorching hot key. Nar picked up the key, which burned his hands alone. He ran over to the door and put the key in, twisting it and unlocking the door. Still though, the heat of the room didn’t change. I walked over to one of the many corpses littering the ground, pulled some scraps of fabric off of them, and using them as a heat barrier to push the door open. Not surprisingly, the metal didn’t burn my hands, and the door swung open, immediately. I looked at my party members, and shook my head at them.

Inside of the brown room, we saw a long hallway with two rows of caryatids, 5 statues on each side. The end of the hall had a black door. We investigated the room, and found a line where footprints seemed to be disturbed. Aelor shot an arrow across the line, and a pit opened up in the center of the room. Having avoided the pit, we made for the door… when the 4 closest caryatid sprang to life around us. We split them up, and made short work of them. At one point, Quip-Qo even summoned Terrance to fight, stone against stone.. We eventually took them down, and regrouped outside the black door.

Kitsune and the 5 Elements

Quip-Qo proceeded into the house, pointing out the trap on the floor to all of us as we entered. He ventured down the hall and into the “lavish” meeting room, and into the kitchen. The larder was locked, so I asked Quip-Qo to open it for us. He sundered it, and we looked inside and found nothing of importance.

As they were searching the larder, I made my way to the back door… and accidentally triggered a lightning trap. After “calmly” pointing out the location of the trap, we headed upstairs. Quip-Qo spent a little time looking for traps at the top of the stairs, and expertly concluded there was nothing. Upstairs, we found a long hallway leading to a large bedroom. The bedroom had featured several bookshelves containing books on various topics. Interestingly, there was a small desk containing a picture of Tirastra Stormwind, matching the signed portrait contained in the locket she had gifted to me. While I investigated this, Kairon found a hollow space above the staircase. Quip-Qo punched through the door, and found a strange bowl filled with water. When gazing into the bowl, we were able to see ourselves, including Nar, who was not yet with us at the time. We took the bowl with us, and left the room.

As we walked out of the room, the rug Quip-Qo stepped over reached up and grabbed at his feet, attempting to wrap him up in it. Kairon shot the rug with bolts of force, and Quip-Qo let out a loud scream – some of the damage had been transferred to him! Just then, the plate armor in the study, as well as the longsword, hurled themselves off of the wall and into action.

After a long and harrowing battle, we finally overcame the constructs and scattered them to the floor. During the fight that preceded, however, the longsword knocked over a Small Journal with some papers that appeared to be hidden inside their pages.

The book appeared to be a journal written in Abyssal, and the author discussed not liking Alethra. It claimed she didn’t make the pocket dimension of Clearfall as she had claimed, and that it was clearly created by the old masters. It claimed to be very easy to summon the old masters back, if only she had certain materials.

After resting for the night, we went out into the village to look for Nar. We headed for the main building in the center of town, which appeared to be a large dining hall. We heard rustling noises coming from the far end of the room, and asked if it was Nar, but heard no answer. I attempted to put the noise to sleep, and nothing happened. Quip-Qo moved closer to investigate, and discovered a terrible smell. We quickly braced for battle, and Kairon summoned a void in the corner to isolate it into the void. I threw a fireball into the void for good measure, and Quip-Qo readied himself to attack anything that came out. That “anything” turned out to be several brown tentacles. They were quickly put down, however their remains gave no hint to their origin.

We took the trail out of town, and quickly came across a fork in the road. One trail led further down the path, which seemed to be where Nar went. The other direction, however, led towards a gate featuring stone-carved foxes with three tails, similar to what we found at The Clearfall Resort. We headed towards the gate, which immediately opened into a small clearing with some trees, a few buildings, and a slightly larger building.

The first small structure was a fountain with a dragon and large dipping spoons resting in the water. The second structure held sheets of paper, and the tree had the papers tied to them. Behind the clearing was a larger building with an ancient shrine and a large bell.

We stepped forward to the paper box, and each grabbed a fortune:

  • I grabbed a sheet of paper, which had a picture of Tirastra on one side, and on the other it said “You will pay a great price, but receive a great reward”.
  • Quip-Qo’s paper said “What you seek follows closer than you know.” A small vial with steaming blue liquid was attached.
  • Aelar’s said “Fortify your mind, for a great friend may also become a great foe.” On the back was a symbol of 5 colors in a row; Black, Brown, Blue, Red, Yellow.
  • Kairon’s “The pact feels one-sided, and I want to see a visible sign of your commitment.”
  • (We later found out that Nar’s fortune read “Your consequences will also be their consequences”)

We then proceeded forward towards the offering box, and each made our offerings:

  • Quip-Qo offered 5 gold, herbs, and a dragon fang.
  • Aelar offered 5 gold, and a prayer to his god.
  • I offered 20 gold, and performed a somber, yet expertly performed, rendition of Tirastra’s fanfare on my flute.
  • Kairon offered 20 gold, and sliced his hand to offer his own blood.

On our way out of the shrine, we saw a small three-tailed fox, the very same as the statue outside the clearing, which was watching us. We attempted to talk to it, motion to it, and even detected it’s magical aura (Conjuration), but nothing remarkable happened. We left the clearing, and it follows us out.

We headed back to the fork, and took the other path that Nar went down. The trail was surrounded by small statues, small stone “buildings”, and stacked rocks. The rocks were always in sets of 5, with a symbol on each. Quip-Qo explained that the symbols represented the 5 elements; Earth, Air, Fire, Water, Nothingness. We quickly realized that the 5 colors we saw before seemed to match up with those symbols.

Continuing further down the path, we crossed a small statue and the three-tailed fox started yipping at us. We looked at it and it walked towards the statue. It began digging at the base of the statue, and we helped it, eventually finding a small vial of dark red liquid inside, which was clearly a healing potion. We continued further up the path, and the fox growled at a side path to our left. It attempted to protect us from the trail, and we headed forward ahead of it. When we got further up ahead, we heard faint music, and saw a figure in white hunched over a grave. Kairon addressed the woman, who claimed to be mourning her dead husband. I told her that we were lost, and were hoping to get some help. She said she’d help me if I could answer a question for her. She asked if I still thought she was beautiful, then removed the fan that was covering her face to reveal a giant gash splitting her face in half.

She raised a ton of skeletons, mind controlled josh, spells didn’t work. Killed the skeletons, grappled her. She left josh’s body, entered RJ. I slowed RJ, Kitsune attacked. Josh went to her husband’s grave, stomped on the stringed instrument behind it, the music stopped. Coincidentally, she left shortly afterwards (unreleated).

The Party Gets Ahead (or Five)...

This post isn’t complete yet

Having decided to camp out by the lake, I set us up with a Tiny Hut spell, and we camped out for the day. I played my flute, and Quip-Qo rested from the previous night’s adventures.

The night was quiet. We took a pair of canoes across the lake in the morning.

The city on the other side looked to be in poor repair. The city was overgrown, and there was trash floating in the water. Aelar saw a change in the water, and I created a Major Image of a third canoe to “scout” ahead. There was a sudden splash, a feint glimpse of a reptilian tail, and a giant wave came up to knock over my would-be-canoe.

I pulled our canoe off to the side, seeking a nearby dock’s safety. Quip-Qo saw an opportunity, and leaped from his boat, jumped off of ours, and landed safely on the dock. Unfortunately, his jump onto our boat threw us off balance, and launched Aelar, Kairon, and myself into the water. Quip-Qo pulled Kairon out of the water, and Aelar swam up to safety. Aelar told us that he saw nothing but scales in the water, and began shooting into the water.

Kairon cast his darkness thing, Nar pulled me out of the water. I cast a cloud of daggers into the water and slashed it. Quip-Qo stunned it.

Just then, the creature emerged from the water behind us and began biting at Nar and myself on the boat. Aelar spun around and fired an arrow at the beast. Just as the arrow hit landed, it burst into a hail of thorns and struck all of the heads simultaneously. Nar pulled the boat up to the dock, and we both leaped to safety. I accessed my Ioun Stone, and pulled a beam of light from the moon towards the beast. Quip-Qo swam back over to it and punched it, stunning it again slightly. Nar reached over and stabbed at it with his lance, and the beast roared in exhaustion, and collapsed into the water.

We looted the body, and pulled the boats to shore. After a short rest, we began our way into the town. We looked at the first set of buildings we could find. They were meager residential homes, and seemed to have been abandoned in moderate haste; clothes remained on the shelves, food was in the larder, and so on. Nothing valuable was left behind – no silver, or anything like that – but nothing seemed to be taken with it’s owners.

We continued to investigate several other buildings, and didn’t find anything different. Nar split off and head further into town, while Quip-Qo wanted to check out the last building closest to the forest.

Kairon knocked, no answer. Quip-Qo tried the door, it was locked. He sundered it, walked in. He stepped on a tile, got frozen. He eventually came loose. Meanwhile, I heard a sound in the bushes, and cast sleep; I heard something snoring, but still heard rustling. I prestidigitated the scent of bear urine inside the bushes to scare off whatever was still lurking. Nothing happened, so I walked forward to investigate. I saw a monstrous spider sleeping on it’s web, when out of nowhere, a branch swung out and attacked me in the face!

Aelar attacked the tree monster, I threw a cloud of daggers at it. Kairon and Quip-Qo came downstairs and started attacking it. I Thunderblasted into it and missed, but caught the spider, who was flung backwards. Aelar continued to fire arrows at the tree monster, eventually felling it. The spider came back for me, and I began mocking it relentlessly. It fired a web at me, but was too distracted from my mockery to successfully hit me. It, too, was put down by Aelar, and we began looting the tree… which immediately ran away from us! Kairon fired an eldritch blast at the tree, and killed it completely. Quip-Qo considered summoning Terrance, but thought the better of it.

The Intimidation of Kardira

(Not completed yet)

While we continued our libations at the The Stumbling Centipede, we pondered the scope of our duty.

I questioned one of the serving staff about Alethra. Alethra created Clearfall and maintains it’s security. She controls the Clearfall Gate when in town. There is a Key of some sort. Kairon began to intimidate the poor woman, and found that there was a new district being built. After a moment of intimidation, I sent the poor woman on her way.

We headed back to The Clearfall Resort to speak with Kardira. We were told about the Registry, and about how often to open the Gate. Kardira also told us about some newcomers that had caused trouble in town. She offered to get us a report of them in the morning.

Kairon nominated Nar to take first watch, and he agreed. In an interesting turn of events, Nar thought he was guarding the Gate, and not the party. As we slept, completely unprotected, strange and malevolent things were going on around us. We later found out that Quip-Qo’s room was broken into by Strange Monsters.

Quip-Qo shouted for help, we all woke up to help. Kairon sent for Nar, who came running. I cast spells on the creatures on the courtyard to slow them, and draw their attention. Quip-Qo ran outside and touched his gift to the earth, summoning a large earth elemental. The elemental began pummeling the intruders, and we quickly began retaking … ground (if you’ll parden my pun). The party rejoined us in the courtyard, and Nar came running to our aid. With a single attack, he lunged for the beast and smote it to the ground. We calmed down the onlookers (mostly children), and went back to sleep.

The next day we questioned Kardira
tracked the salamander into town, lost the trail
I made an announcement to gather information
a gruff man from the back, who later introduced himself as Gregor, told us he isn’t surprised. Got all Trump-ey, talking about unnatural things where the common man lives.

He led us through town towards the water
The lake got swampy and gross, “kind of feels icky”.
Across the lake there used to be a town across the lake; nobody knows what happened to it or if it’s still there. Travel across the lake is no longer possible. We’ve decided to camp out by the lake and see what comes up.

Three Tailed Fox

Welcome to Clearfall

Kairon Wayward and I were well on our way to Khalab one morning, when we began to hear a loud sound in the woods. It sounded like a woman in danger, so we decided to investigate further. We saw a human woman beset by orcs and what appeared to be a wereboar. To my surprise, we also found my old friends Quip-Qo and Aelar, as well as an Orcish Paladin who later introduced himself as Nar Ghorrunk. We quickly worked together, and began felling the orc soldiers. The lady came to me for protection, naturally, and informed me that we needed to leave. We did not heed her warnings, and soon realized that was a mistake. None of our attacks seemed to hurt the wereboar, and we were at a loss for what to do next.

After collecting our wits, we decided to try attacks of the magical variety. I rushed towards it, and a burst of thunder emitted from all around me. The sound washed over the wereboar and he was flung back a dozen feet. Seizing the opportunity, Kairon opened a portal behind the wereboar into space and time itself. The last thing we saw before it was swallowed by blackness was giant tentacles surrounding the beast, and cold mist seeping out.

The beast attempted to climb out of the dark realm, and we fought to push it back in. Eldritch blasts, stunning fists, and radiant light pushed the beast back into the darkness. After a short time, the beast stopped returning from the darkness, and only after the portal was closed were we assured of the beast’s demise.

The lady introduced herself as Alicia, and once again told us that we needed to head for safety. We agreed, and headed out of the forest.

After walking for about an hour, we approached the edge of the forest. Suddenly, and without warning, Nar vanished before our eyes. Quip-Qo too began to vanish, but stumbled backwards to safety. Kairon tried to magically convince Alicia to go rescue our friend, and she said she would only go if someone came with her. Never one to turn away from danger, I agreed to accompany her, and we started to head across the barrier.

As I took her hand, it felt dry to the touch, almost scaly. At the last possible moment, she began to pull me into the portal. I resisted, and she disappeared into the beyond. After informing my party of the situation, I bravely jumped inside.

Once across, we were in what appeared to be the same clearing, however it was a little darker, and the sky didn’t seem as vast, it seemed smaller somehow. The forest behind us was shaped like a door, but nothing was able to pass through it. A city appeared to be at the foothills below. We rested for a bit, and proceeded into the town.

Nar decided to ask some of the townsfolk where we were. He asked one man, and the man gave a confused look. He asked if we’d checked in yet; not wanting to embarrass ourselves with our ignorance, we told him that, of course we had. He said that if we’d already checked in, we should head to a tavern to relax. He recommended The Stumbling Centipede, which we were told had way better ale than other establishments. Quip-Qo and Aelar decided to head to the bar, while Nar, Kairon, and I went to see what “checking in” consisted of.

We headed up the hill towards the check in location , and found a large, single-storied building with walls made of a kind of paper. It was surrounded with interesting rock gardens, and a door could be seen at the top of a short staircase. We opened the door, which began to quickly fold into a the shape of a small fox. Bewildered, we continued inside to see what this strange place contained.

We found a large desk with a slight, gray-skinned gnomish woman hunched over it. She appeared to be taking notes. When we greeted her, she asked how many were in our party. Not wanting to give up too much information without knowing what we were about, I told her 6. She said she had a reservation for 5; later she found that our party was prepaid, but would not tell us by who. Upon further questioning, we learned her name was Kardira.

We were given a brochure about the building, which included a map of The Clearfall Resort and Clearfall City. She also handed us 6 pieces of folded paper; small origami fox, carp, etc, and told us that Wellington would guide us to our rooms. Wellington appeared to be an automaton. He took us to our rooms, and each was unlocked with the origami fox, carp, etc.

We spent a few minutes in our rooms, before eventually deciding to rejoin the party in town. We headed back towards town, and quickly met up with our group.

Before we could even order drinks, a waitress came out and began apologizing to the group. She said that there was a misunderstanding, and we were to be upgraded to the private room for parties at once. She then began moving Quip-Qo’s plates and glasses to the room to prepare for us.

After we sat down, Wellington came into the room as if to address the party. His mouth opened, and a small piece of paper began sliding from between his lips. The Note, signed by Alethra, spoke of a proposed deal she had to offer us. She had to leave town for awhile, and she said we would work to defend the wall. While we stay, we could accept tokens of her appreciation that would expire once the contract was concluded. If we accepted, however, we would be accepting a magically binding contract, and that we could cancel this contract at any time.

We began opening the boxes, and knew immediately that this was going to be an interesting few days to be sure!


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