On 5/24/2017 1:02 PM, Justisaur
This third post is the first 'session' I decided to run 'Storm Kings
Thunder - A Great Upheaval' since it's free from Wotc. Rather than
running a random dungeon where I might screw it up. It seemed like it'd
be less work, and if I liked it I could run it for my players.
*WARNING - SPOILERS* for A GREAT UPHEAVAL
If you are playing or think you might play this, avoid this series.
(DM Who to narrate with, I'll leave it to a d4 - 2 Ollsec the Dwarf Wizard.)
Iudiweg "Something on the wind, sir. It doesn't smell right."
I held my hand up for a stop. Pleat growled softly, it sounded like a
purr from a lion. He brought his gigantic axe around from his bag eyes
I again read he letter from Iudiweg's cousin.
"Greetings Iudiweg. I hope my letter finds you well. I smell a new
opportunity here at Nightstone. Adventure is in the earth, I can feel
it stirring. My Inn has been booming, nobles from the south visit to
hunt the hills, teaming with game. Goblins have been harrying them, and
guards are at a premium. I've mentioned dwarves are best at dealing
with goblins, and that my 'relative' might be available at a premium,
and wouldn't it impress the other nobles if they had a dwarf guard! I
was met with promising assent. The nobles can't just turn tail from
goblins either, it wouldn't look good, so they're in a bit of a hard
place. Come see me at the Nightstone Inn!
- Your cousin Morak"
Goblin troubles and wealthy nobles. Everyone knew we dwarves were good
at dealing with Goblins, and few of us clan-less to do it for the
humans. A killing to be made, in both senses of the word. It didn't
interest me in the slightest. It was pedestrian. I looked for secrets,
magic, power, knowledge. Still, funds were tight, and research just to
look where to look was expensive. Iudiweg got restless sitting in one
place too long too. Here we are.
Ysi said softly "No guards on the wall, no noise."
I said "Also note the keep, it's in ruin, the keep's drawbridge is down
and broken. The village's drawbridge is down, but intact."
Just then a loud bell started ringing, a call to worship or trouble?
Pleat's gigantic frame crouched and he loped forward, I motioned for Ysi
to trail and Iudiweg stuck to my left hand.
Pleat loped up to the bend where he could see over the drawbridge and
held up his hand, motioning us to stay put. We waited a minute and he
returned to us.
"Dire wolves, eating in middle. Don't see any people."
I thought for a moment. "Dire wolves are nasty, I don't know if I fancy
our chances against them. If we went to a tower we could barricade it
and fire upon them in relative safety." I said looking to the 20' stone
Ysi said "Someone's ringing that bell."
Iudiweg said "We should try to get to my cousin's Inn, maybe he can tell
us what's going on."
Pleat said "No see bodies, but animal in middle, wolves eating."
I continued "Someone's here, we could hole up in a tower until we see
what's going on. Perhaps Ysi could scout for us while we do that."
Ysi laughed "No thanks."
Pleat said "I scout."
I said "Let's all go to the tower inside the wall, go the top and see
what we can from there first."
We carefully snuck to the south tower, rightmost to us. Closing the
door and propping a chair up against it. "Can you lock it?" I said to Ysi
He took a small kit of picks out and had it done nary slower than you'd
use a key.
Iudiweg said "We might want quick way out."
I told Pleat to scout up, he came back shortly and shook his head. We
went to the roof 20 feet above the ground, we hid against the
crenelations peering through the village. We could see that the next
tower to the south had partially collapsed, and there were craters and
3' boulders in the square below.
"Giants." I whispered.
"No sign of them now, sir." Iudiweg said
"What about their pets? They wouldn't leave theirs here." Ysi said
thumbing at the dire wolves.
"Maybe they just wandered in and found a dead something to eat?" I
Pleat said "No, wolves wouldn't go into town, the smell would put them
off, they must be pets."
"There's nowhere giants could be in this town." I replied.
"We could make a distraction and see what comes?" said Ysi
"It's got merit," I said "But we might be better catching them unaware.
We know there's someone in the chapel. But we'd need to disable or get
past the wolves quietly. Besides anything that would have come would've
gone to the chapel already with that bell ringing."
Ysi was looking out over parapet "I don't think those are pets after
all, look there's reigns. Must be something that's been riding them."
Iudiweg said "Sir, my cousin mentioned goblins."
"Mmh. Yes. Could be goblins here, perhaps giants were employing them,
or something else was employing them both. Goblins could be hiding
anywhere. That doesn't really change anything. It doesn't make much
sense either way, why are there no people, other than the boulders and
one dead animals no signs of a fight. I do love a mystery." I ruminated
I thought again how to approach this, we could create a distraction -
but it might alert the wolves and anything in the chapel, as well as
anything else, we could try to sneak by the wolves, but they'd be likely
to smell us. If we did something outside the town, we might be able to
raise the drawbridge while whatever came was outside, but we'd likely
have to have someone go far enough away and I wouldn't want to leave
Pleat said "We could sneak around the other side of the holy place to a
back door or make one."
I was surprised at the hulking man's genius. He had seen, or at least
heard of many battles, and we hadn't. "Yes." I replied.
Iudiweg said "Sir? I'd like to check the Inn first, maybe Morak or
someone is still there?"
I considered "The temple is closer, we'd have to pass around it, and
there's a wrought iron fence back there, I'd hate to get stuck in there,
fenced in. Temple it is."
It was actually very easy to get to the back of the chapel, it being the
closest building to the north tower, there was no entrance there though.
There might be something over the fence. It looked like a graveyard.
Ysi & Pleat scrambled over easily, Pleat tossed a rope over for us to
There was a side entrance in the graveyard. We entered, no one was
there again. It was a temple to the human's sun god. I sent Iudiweg
and Pleat ahead up the bell tower. We surprised the goblins they were
both swinging from the bell rope and laughing.
(DM: rolled stealth, lowest was 12 vs. goblins 9 passive perception.
Iudiweg first - attack 4. monsters surprised. Ysi - dagger 16 hit, 8
dam, roll goblin's hp 9 & 8, goblin survives. Ollsec acid splash 1st
fails save, 2nd makes it, damn 2, puts first down. Pleat hit 10 dam. )
We decimated the two goblins Ysi with a dagger, I cast a splash of acid,
and Pleat with his great-axe. I wished we'd captured one, but the fall
would've killed them anyway.
There were no clues here. We went down, and I set Pleat & Iudiweg to
the main door while Ysi and I rummaged over the dead goblins. The one I
checked had a short bow & a dozen arrows, scimitar, leather armor - too
small for me unfortunately. There were a couple sacks nearby that were
patched poorly, probably the goblins, we looked through those finding 3
incense blocks, a palm sized silver unicorn head, and 37 cp & 15 sp. We
took those, and snuck back out the side heading for the Inn.
(whoops, found the little tiny map on the side of the bigger one for
temple, it doesn't have a side door, oh well. Not going back now.)
We crept over to the back of the inn which was collapsed, exposing a
room on the top floor as well as the kitchen. As we approached we could
hear something rummaging in what sounded like pots and pans. Pleat
kicked a chunk of building and the sound stopped, we'd been heard. We
rushed to the hole.
(DM: Pleat rolled 9 on stealth, rolled 9 for goblin to hide as they come
into kitchen. Initiative Ysi goes throws dagger at goblin 5 dam, goblin
Ysi saw the goblin and tossed his dagger into it's neck. "We need to
capture one." I said.
Ysi shrugged and said "Better it's dead than yelling out an alarm."
while retrieving his dagger and going through it's remains again. He
came up with a cracked hourglass and a lot of useless junk as well as
the same armament the others had. We passed through the only door
finding a shambles of a dinning room a dead goblin with a bolt sticking
out of it's chest lay on the floor, as well as a bed from a large hole
that went all the way to the roof. I thought Morak might still be here,
if the crossbow bolt was an indication. I whispered "Call Morak, not
too loud." to Iudiweg.
We went toward the dead goblin, Iudiweg calling out in her loudest
whisper "Morak? Is that you here?"
We saw a figure crouching with a crossbow above Iudiweg called out
"Who's up there? I'm Morak, the innkeeper's cousin, we're dwarves, not
(she rolled 7 on stealth)
The figure whispered back "Shh! Come up the stairs."
We turned and went up the stairs and entered the door where the figure
was. She revealed herself... she had a winged snake coiled around her
left shoulder. A human.
Iudiweg said "What happened?"
The woman said quietly "I saw giants attacking, throwing boulders from a
cloud! I was knocked out by debris when this happened, pointing to the
hole in the roof. I just woke not long ago, and found a goblin
rummaging about below. I saw the giant wolves outside and didn't want to
tangle with them. I was hoping help would come or the goblins would leave."
(Deception 23 succeeds against the party)
Iudiweg said "We can get you out, the back corner is gone."
The woman said "Thanks, but where would I go? It might be safer to stay
with you? What're you planning to do anyway?"
Iudiweg said "Find Morak first. We'll check the rest of the Inn first."
she looked to me for confirmation. I nodded.
I asked "How good are you in a fight?" I noted her hand-crossbow,
usually favored by rogues, and shortsword, but no armor.
"I'm a decent shot, I think I just got lucky with that goblin when it
spotted me. I'd best stay away from front-lines."
"How about that snake?" I asked
"Oh, Scaley? He's just a pet."
I nodded and said "Stay behind us then, make sure the next goblin we
find, we don't kill."
We went back out into the hall and checked the other doors.
Ysi prattled with her softly introducing us and getting her name "Kella"
and finding out she was a travelling monk, on a holy pilgrimage and had
just stopped for the night here.
Iudiweg said "A monk? Who do you worship? I'm a devotee of Thor myself."
Kella replied "Thor? I've not heard of that one. Tell me about him,
I interjected in a harsh whisper "Keep it down, could be goblins anywhere."
Iudiweg said "Yes, sir!" to me and "Another time." to Kella.
The first room we had checked was left made, it didn't look occupied.
The next was the room the was above the kitchen, partially destroyed.
It looked lived in, a dwarven chest was at one side and a tapestry
depicting mountains was still hanging on the wall to the right.
Iudiweg whispered loudly "Morak? Morak! Are you in here?" then whispered
"This has to be his room, that's his tapestry."
Ysi said "He doesn't appear to be in. We should check the chest... for
Iudiweg said "No, he'd be mad. Just leave it there."
I said "If it becomes necessary."
We checked the last room which was also unoccupied.
She said "Where could they have gone?"
Kella said "They probably fled the giant's attack. There was no way to
defend against them."
I said "Why would giants attack, then leave? Why wouldn't the people
have come back? Why the goblins."
Pleat said "Giants captured them?"
Iudiweg said "Sir, Morak wouldn't have let himself be captured. He
would've fought if they'd come down to capture them. I expect he'd have
a secure hole somewhere. I didn't see any evidence of that downstairs."
I said "Maybe the goblins know something, lets check the other buildings
and see if any are around. They seem to be rather confident no one is
coming, looting and playing well split up so far, perhaps there's more."
We snuck out the way we came in, and around to a small farmhouse half
destroyed by the giant's attack. It was my turn to trip up on the
debris, a couple of goblins in the fenced yard chasing a chicken saw us.
They drew their bows and fired on Pleat as he was in the lead, he
snaked out of the way nearly getting nicked by one, then ducked around
the other side of the farmhouse. We split around the farmhouse to corner
them, we only saw one when we did so, Ysi cocked him in the back of the
head dropping him as he backed away from Pleat. Iudiweg and I prepared
to cast a spell on the other if it appeared.
(DM Both goblins missed, moved and hid 7 & 18. Pleat miss, Ysi hit for
7, goblin had 4. Iudiweg & Ollsec ready cantrips.)
The wolves had heard the shout and bounded over, one ripped Iudiweg's
throat open. I went into shock. My love was being mauled by a wolf! I
saw the other take out Ysi out of the corner of my eye. The goblin
scrambled out from under the farmhouse. I regained my composure enough
to launch my cold spell at it, it slowed but turned and put an arrow in
Pleat. Pleat roared, but I heard it only as if at a distance. He moved
to the wolf that had Ysi and opened a great gash in it's side, but it
didn't slow. It was time for my most powerful magic, I threw sand at
them and said the words which I can no longer remember, the magic
ripping them from by brain. They faltered, the goblin slowed and
drooped to the ground followed by the wolf Pleat was engaged with. The
wolf mauling my love slowed for a moment, but shook it off.
(DM 1st worg hits Iudiweg for 15 - she's at 0. 2nd worg hits Ysi for 12
at 0. Goblin hit by ray from Olsec for 4, had 9. Goblin hit Pleat for
4. Pleat rages, hits Worg for 10, has 20. Ysi makes death save. Ollsec
casts sleep 22 hp, goblin has 5 and Worg 2 has 10, leaving 7 for worg #1
who has 24 which isn't enough. Iudiweg makes death save.)
It looked around confused and afraid at the magic power it had felt and
it's pack being felled, it growled and backed up to the center of the
square with it's hackles up. Pleat perused it yelling a primal scream.
I thought he might bring the rest of the goblins down on us, if there
were any left. I ran to Iudiweg and tried to bandage her, but her neck
was torn too badly and my hands were shaking. I kissed her on the cheek
and whispered "Don't leave me my love." Her amethyst eyes flickered
open, she pushed my hand away as she brought hers up to cover her wound
She croaked "Don't write me off yet Sir!" attempting a smile, which
looked more like pain. She saw Ysi's condition and said a prayer to
Thor, her hand crackled with lightning which leapt to Ysi, where it
touched his wounds were closed. His eyes bolted open as he convulsed.
(DM Morale - failed with a roll of 9 (rolled 6, +4 for HD, -1 for
difference in defeated # (considering 2 of 3 for them and 2 of 4 for
party), fighting retreat, moves 50' away then readies to attack if
perused. Pleat charges (-2 ac) but misses. Wolf misses him. Ysi fails
death save - 1 level of exhaustion. Ollsec rolls a 1 with medicine (I
don't like failure to bind wounds, thinking of HR it away.) Iudiweg
makes her death save with a 20, gaining 1 hp. She casts cure wounds on
Ysi for 10, fully healing him.)
The wolf and Pleat dodged each other's blows, an arrow sprouted from his
chest, but he hadn't noticed. Ysi yelled "Bad dog! down! heel!" moving
cautiously toward the wolf. The wolf paid no heed, if the situation
hadn't been so uncertain I would've laughed. Iudiweg couldn't hold her
composure and laughed cut short by coughing up blood. She croaked out
another prayer to Thor, her hand on her throat crackled with electricity
- cauterizing her wound. I looked around briefly for Kella, she was not
to be found. I moved toward the wolf looking for who'd shot the arrow
and saw the goblin in a doorway to the south knocking another arrow. I
called upon the spirits of my ancestors and a ghostly skeletal hand came
up from the ground next to the goblin it grabbed his ankle and dug it's
bony claws in, the goblin yelped looking down in horror.
(DM Morale - at -6 now that Ysi and Iudiweg aren't defeated, but makes
it. The wolf misses. Goblin shoots Pleat for 7. 3 after resistance from
rage leaving him with 8. Pleat misses. Ysi vicious mockery vs. wolf
saved. Iudiweg Healing Word for 7 on herself, now at 8. Chill Touch
hits for 2 against goblin, goblin hp 11, so now 9. )
The goblin whistled for the wolf, which turned giving Pleat the
opportunity to open a wide gash in it's shoulder. The wolf yelped, but
ran full out to the goblin who vaulted up to it's back, grabbed the
reigns, and they bolted off behind another farmhouse heading toward the
drawbridge. Pleat ran after them waiving his bloody axe and yelling,
but the wolf was nearly twice his speed. The rest of us moved toward
the drawbridge preparing spells to throw at it if it reappeared.
(DM Morale at -5 as the goblin joined, 0 which is flee. Pleat
opportunity hits for 14 dam, leaving it with 10. Others ready cantrips)
The goblin had tricked us, it waited behind the building for Pleat then
attacked as he approached. I heard the wolf yelp again. I sent Iudiweg
and ysi around the other side of the farm, and ran to catch up to Pleat.
Our prepared magic faded.
(DM Morale at -5 made it. Goblin fires at Pleat 1 miss, Wolf readies
attack and attacks when Pleat approaches, hits for 9, 4 after rage
resistance, Pleat has 4 left. Pleat attacks wolf, hit for 9 leaving it
with 1. Firebolt, Sacred Flame & Vicious Mockery fade.)
I saw the wolf leap back from Pleat and turn which caused the goblin to
shoot itself through his own leg. The goblin screamed in pain. Pleat
charged after them and cut the wolf's head off with a leaping chop. Ysi
laughed and yelled "You shot yourself through the leg, I've never seen
such incompetence!" Iudiweg shouted another prayer to Thor, and I pulled
out my scroll to imprint the words in my mind to the magic for the
(DM Morale at -9 for wolf due to damage 6 fighting withdrawal. Group
check at -5 7 fighting withdrawal. Wolf disengages and moves. Goblin
fires at Pleat natural 1, confirm fumble 7, fires at self hits for 8,
now at 1. Goblin saves vs. Vicious Mockery. Iudiweg uses her action to
regain sacred flame, Ollsec to regain chill touch)
Ysi yelled "Running away now? You'll probably just trip and hit your
head!" and laughed at the goblin, who did just that.
(DM Morale at -9 for Goblin gets 0, flee. Pleat misses opportunity.
Goblin runs for drawbridge. Ysi vicious mockery for 3.)
"We have to kill the other wolf and tie up the goblin, my magic only
made them sleep." We returned to them, finding Kella looting the
goblin. I told her "Tie him up." Then to the others "All at once
against the wolf, if he wakes from one of our attacks, he may be able to
flee or attack us." We prepared and all beat on it. It woke for only a
moment yelping and then lay still.
(DM all ready to attack with Ollsec. Pleat misses even with advantage,
Ysi uses dagger, hits & automatic normal crit for 11 dam. at 0.)
Kella waited until we were done and said "I have nothing to secure him
Pleat tossed her his rope. "Here."
Iudiweg watched her and said grumpily "That's not how you tie up a
prisoner, out of the way." She tied him quickly and securely, her skill
reflected her time in the Navy. "Why didn't you help us?" she shot at
Kella as she did her work.
Kella said hanging her head "I... I was afraid."
Iudiweg cursed in dwarvish at Kella, her sailor's swears not worth
Pleat was less tact saying "Humans are oft cowards. Some are born that
way." as he cleaned his axe eyeing Kella. I couldn't tell if there was a
threat to his comment or something else.
(Notes: I don't think the cantrip house rule is working out very well.
I need to figure something else out. I like that they need to use
different ones, but the cleric really only has the one for attack, and
even the Wizard doesn't have many. It's really just slowing the
Wizard/Cleric down into doing nothing every other round once they're
used up. It should be pushing them to use the higher level spells or
equipment, but I didn't feel the need as the threat level, and don't
have alternate equipment at this point. It seemed better to spend a
round refreshing than using up a 1st level spell.
I'm not terribly sure about the 1x spell thing either as it just meant
the cleric had to use the inferior holy word for a 2nd heal on herself.
I was hoping it would help with the healbot cleric and one-trick pony
issues with the wizard.)