Posted on August 3, 2012
The Acts of The Lords of Rannick, LXX
In the module background, the above picture is provided as a situation indicative of the perils of climbing through the Kodar Mountains on your way to Xin Shalast. After last night’s successful negotiation of what history may record as the Breakfast Treaty, it looks like that Yeti is coaching you to get up that rope faster before that dragon thing eats the lot of you. “Gwhat are you doing? Gmy grandmother can glift gherself faster than gthat! Gcome on, gjust two gmore pulls, gyou gcan do gthis! Don’t gquit on me gnow!”
The party, having defeated the wendigo and obtained the Vekker brother’s advice on getting to Xin Shalast, needed a bit of a rest. Dismissing his Secure Shelter, Tersplink conjured up a new one and they piled inside to sleep. Arradin had finally received the healing she was evidently not asking loudly enough for and Dagfinn managed to trick his chipped sword into believing that it was actually totally fine and got it working and functional again. It now just looks as if it was made with a vicious bleeding notch in it. The Secure Shelter has space for 8 bunks, a table and 8 chairs, a writing desk, a fireplace and an Unseen Servant who, we assume, refreshes the ink pot and stokes the fire, since there isn’t much else for him to do.
The doors and windows are relatively secure, not impenetrable, just better than your average stone cottage. But everyone felt fairly safe and headed to the bunks for sleep after their busy day. After a few hours, Halvard woke up and he and Arradin became aware of someone padding around in the snow outside. They woke everyone up, much to the annoyance of the spellcasters.
Tersplink, having forgotten to put a No Vacancies sign outside the cottage, opened the shuttered windows and peeked outside. He felt a mometary thrill of fear as a pair of lambent eyes swung in his direction. The creature outside, checking out his cottage, was a Yeti. Tersplink said somethings to it and the Yeti yodel-growled back, neither being able to understand the other.
Dagfinn, having cast no spells the day before, still had Tongues on the tip of his… the um, you know that… gah, what is that word… Anyway, he cast it because he did not recognise the language they spoke and once able to establish a dialogue the Yetis a) wondered how he did that and b) wondered if there was food in the cottage. There was food in the cottage, thought Tersplink, but he’d be damned if he was going to hand over his delicious beloved cousin to some Yeti. Upon the relay of that information, Halvard cast Heroes Feast out the window, creating a banquet table covered in divine food and drink. The Yetis, very much enjoying their new-found food dispensing friends, fell upon the feast and gorged until it was all gone.
Yetis aren’t bad – you see – and they’re not stupid either. An amazing buff-laden breakfast goes a long way to helping a hungry tribe in this part of the world. Dagfinn negotiated a bit with them and told them where they were going. The Yeti didn’t seem to think that it was possible to get to the “other place”, but if the breakfasts kept coming, they’d follow along and guard the cottage while the party slept. The route was explained to them and the Yetis agreed to the Croissant Concordat. It is, after all, the most important meal of the day.
(I kind of wonder how much of this conversation was influenced by my wife burning bacon in the kitchen.)
Back to sleep, as the spellcasters needed a few more hours to recover their smarts. Come morning, they started their Drugs vs. Magic vs. Drugs and Magic conversation in which they discussed how they were going to get there. From what I could tell of the conversation, they seem to think that the reason the city has never been found is due to laziness on everyone’s part. If someone would just walk up here, pfft, we’d all know where it was… There was a lot of talk of sending Inspector Spacetime back through the eons with the Serum of Liao, but eventually they settled on flying. A few marathon Fly spell sessions and they’d make double the distance in a fraction of the time AND not get fatigued doing it. The visions that the Vekker brothers experienced are consistent with what Dagfinn has seen so far when he has been “chasing the phone box“. So it seems to make sense.
So that’s what they did. Albedon and Tersplink cast Fly on everyone and they all flew north towards the second fork in the river, which they believed to be the “Aleph”. Arradin, Dagfinn, Ron and Kerplak had all abstained from eating so far, while the others continued to enjoy their pre-Kerplak amuse bouches trail rations.
The turbulent wind didn’t stop anyone from making the journey and as the Yeti loped along on the ground, the party flew to a suitable ledge upon which to create the Secure Shelter.
After a restful night’s sleep under the watch of the Yeti tribe, the party fulfilled their part of the Bacon and Eggs Accord and set of through the air again. Those who were fasting were starting to get a bit peckish. The weather was calmer and they flew with no interruptions, due north toward the river fork. As they landed on a suitable ledge for the day, a few folks spotted some avian activity through the swirling vapour that occasionally veils the mountains at this altitude. As Tersplink set about creating the secure shelter, a gluttony of Kuchrima descended from the cloud cover.
This foul creature is a disgusting cross between a humanoid and a condor. Almost harpy-like in appearance, it has powerful avian legs ending in wicked talons, and a torso and upper body resembling that of a human, though covered in patches of filthy, blood-crusted hair and feathers. Great feathered wings extend from its shoulders, and a beaked, vulture-like head bobs at the end of a crooked neck.
Eww. Bearing huge curved bows in one talon, and notching arrows in with the other talon, the flying condor-things began raining arrows down on the party as they hovered in the air.
The spellcasters had a hard time of it because several Kuchrima held their actions waiting for spellcasters to wave their hands around to cast spells. As soon as they did, they put an arrow in them. That rocked the concentration of the casters a few times, making them lose their spells, but it affected Halvard the most. Tersplink managed to get off an Improved Invisibility spell, and was able to get some buffs off but found that his Magic Missile, oddly, did nothing to the Kuchrima. Halvard cast various spells in the key of Gorum-says-fuck-you, and eventually had to heal himself as none of these cowardly avians would close to fight with him. Albedon, meanwhile, cast various fire spells because that’s what he does, Fireball-ing, Contagious Flame-ing and Scorching Ray-ing. But he also summoned two celestials in the form of Bralani Azatas, who set upon the Kuchrima. Albedon had some complicated turns.
Ron found that they were hovering just with his vertical leaping ability so he pummeled a couple with his quarterstaff which seemed to really hurt them and when there were none in range, he sent flurries of shuriken at them.
Kerplak made one of them drop its bow and forced it to move into melee with him, where it bit him, infecting him with filth fever. The fight did not last long as the Bralani and Ron’s shuriken joined in.
Arradin activated her arrow-attracting shield, and then stood there, giving her customary rallying cry of “Someone cast ________ on me!”. Once she had Haste and Fly on her, she flew out to engage the Kuchrima and swatted them effectively.
But he also buffed everyone with Haste and then Fus-Ro-Dah’ed an assailant and also used his Flametongue to “lick” one of them with fire.
The Kuchrima fled – maybe it was the fire-licking-thing, maybe it was that they were suddenly outnumbered, but they fled off into the clouds, with Kerplak speculatively shooting at their backs. Halvard dispatched one unconscious opponent and Ron dispatched the other. As they gathered themselves in the blood-spattered snow, healing was dispensed and the Yeti clambered into view, some ways distant. Tersplink set up another cottage and they made camp for the night there.
In one day, they estimate that they will reach the area where the Vekkers first saw the “ghost river”. In two days, the moon will be at its fullest.