World of Genericka

Trials and Triumphs vol 1
The Return

It was a challenge the League faced in finding the four part triangle of the dwarves. The wrong people can make all the difference. The failings of our group were many, and we left Kuln within hours of entering it, Some dies, some broke under the strain, and some turned from their companions.

I am not sure what the deal with the strange robed priests was. They acted strangely upon the stairs within the citadel, they rescued Miranda from the river, then attacked us in the woods. I do know they sought the same dwarven artifact we hold the majority of, but as to their motivation or purpose I can only speculate, and such speculation is dark indeed.

I returned to Coruvon alone. It took some time to unwind and get my head strait after those events. Perhaps days, maybe a week, I am not sure. I am glad we had made arrangements for our own building in the city. I made plans and set affairs in order and then took time for myself. When I was ready to begin again I began organizing my affairs. That is when the Alabaster oracle showed up.

We spoke of the quest to this point, and I explained that I was not giving up. I lamented the loss of so many brave travelers and lamented those I had begun my journey with. She explained that for a price she may be able to help. IN time she returned and told me to take the pieces of my companions to the statue of the frog god, (where this all started). Before I left Miranda returned, and we went together into the swamp.

And for the second time, Bearkiller and Larissa left the swamp naked and without any equipment. But back in town we got them properly dressed and resupplied. While we made preparations to return to Kuln we were visited by a dwarf and a halfling who had heard of our adventures, mostly the successful ones I am sure, and were willing to join our band. Another strong weapon was welcome and we were in sore need of a stealthy companion who could get us into tricky places.

So we made ready to leave the next morning, when a storm arrived, but no normal storm, a deluge of rain and lightning, seemingly targeted at the buildings of the city itself. The waters of the river rose to flood an lightning destroyed wood and stone and began fired the rain did not douse. But in due course the storm passed thought the damage was great. Most of the buildings in the streets around our building were damaged or destroyed. I paid those nearby to help them in finding better luck in new locations while obtaining most of the land around us.

And the next night as we made preparations to leave there was a commotion at the gate. When we arrived the guards were fighting hopelessly against some undead monstrosity. A huge skeleton with three skulls and many arms was walking into the gates and slaying as he advanced. We quickly set upon the horror, and though the fire in his chest did flare to engulf us we were only scorched. It proceeded past us and attempted to lay waste to the city, where we finally put it down. Obviously some agency of considerable power wants to wipe Coruvon off the map and is beginning to take action to accomplish it. It is my hope that when the dwarven artifact is assembled it will protect Coruvon as well as Kuln as it restores the land from its swampy curse.

With no further delays we left, and had an uneventful return to Kuln. Venturing in we found our way to the upper level, and with some informed speculation from the dwarf we quickly found the stairs we sought to the higher level. But proceeding down the stairs was a strange floating creature. We dispatched it quickly, and a good thing too, Larissa suspects it was some type of Beholder, one of the mythic dangers to all adventurers.

Traveling up the stairs we found a large waiting room. one of the doors was frozen shut. It turned out to be an ice room, for the storage of cold and frozen goods, including a ghost.

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...time passes...

After Lerufic limped into Coruvon he waited. Over a week passed before Miranda showed up. She said she needed to “clear her head and re-connect with Nature”. During that week, Lerufic talked to the Alabaster Oracle about bringing back from the dead two fallen companions: Bearkiller and Larrissa. The Alabaster Oracle said she would look into it.

A couple days later The Alabaster Oracle visited the now livable “Adventure Guildhouse of the Noble League” (needs work, but all the major holes are patched). She informed Lerufic and Miranda that she has a contact who can perform the rites… for a price. The price: 3,000gp and the completed Dwarven Amulet of the Citidel. Her contact, or course, was none other than the Frog God. Without much choice in the matter (and with much anguish), he and Miranda made the trip into the swamp. It turned out that small and quiet was a good combination, with no encounters of consequence, although an encounter with a lizardman party did get a bit uneasy as the lizardmen were hungry and outnumbered the party by 5 to one. At last they reached the Frog God. The Frog God ate both “fingers”, and after a short moment or two, spat out both Bearkiller and Larrissa…naked as the day they were born. I guess it’s much the same, second time around.

Weak and confused from being dead for so long, they needed help to return to Coruvon. A slow trek back found the quartet back at their Guildhouse. Waiting for them was the Alabaster Oracle and a couple of new companions.

The Alabaster Oracle was glad to have been of use in returning two fallen heroes back into the realm of the living. Everyone was happy for a minute or two, when there was a firm knock at the door. Carefullly opening it, Lerufic was surprised to see a pair of diminutive halflings who looked oddly familiar. The halfling brothers, it turns out, need help at the Citidel. They have located a secret treasure stash, but can’t find a way around the guardian; a horrid undead, dwarven jester. Sensing something a bit more than “it’s a zombie”, the brothers wisely left for help. They offer half the treasure hoard to the League.

So, what will our newly reformed “Noble League” do? Just continue along, or take the brothers up on their offer?

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The Tale of the Noble League
Down the Dark Chasm

And so the mighty Noble League set out to recover the dwarven artifact and save the dwarven citadel of Kuln, end the vile cursed swamp and restore the city of Coruvon and the surrounding lands.

The venture began well enough, fully equipped, with some new travelers to add strength and versatility to the group. The dwarf warrior Bardin, Zook the gnome druid, Urza the wizard and Silequay the dark elf ranger joined Miranda the cleric of nature and Lerufic the wandering bard to finish the mission that had taken many weeks and cost the lives of many brave adventurers.

The road to Kuln appeared blocked, but perhaps that is for the best as Giants had taken up guarding the way. The group had to slay one so he wouldn’t bring news of the group to his massive companions. Such news would surely end with the League being hunted and possibly and attack on the military city of Coruvon.

So it was decided to take the narrow mountain pass of the stone knight. And other than a strange blacksmith the trip was rather uneventful.

Getting into Kuln was no trouble, most of the main level had been cleared on previous expeditions. We searched many rooms and decided to take the stairs up. After a brief scare from a Banshee we fled and split up, coming back together before some impressive double doors. With a little magic we got the door open and defeated an ogre within. With the defeat of the ogre, we found its treasure and the third piece of the dwarven artifact.

Using her magic Miranda determined that the last piece was almost directly above us on a level of the citadel we had not yet explored. As we sought a likely spot for another stairwell, the wizard had an idea. We quickly vacated the area before Urza tried to bring the roof down. She brought down many stones which pelted the league but the citadel stood.

We found a comfortable room and decided to take a break. The dwarf found some armor and we dived up the ogres treasure and settled in. With a crash we woke, half the league had fallen into a chasm that had opened into the middle of the room. Ler and Silk were the last two safe. When they tried to rescue Urza, they were unsuccessful and Urza fell as well.

Too far down to try and get a rope to, they went back to the stairs and down to the bottom. Finding the chasm they also found the remains of the party, Bardin, Miranda, and Urza in the remains of the forge. In the attempt to save them Sil was also pulled into the chasm and dumped into the river, only Urza was eventually saved. Her and Lerufic searched for the others, but upon not finding them went out to the camp outside the citadel.

On the stairs up the encountered two mysterious dark robed figures. The encounter went poorly and the strangers disappeared. Back at the camp they found Miranda very wounded and the corpse of Silequay. Invisibly Lerufic asked Miranda if she needed help. She agreed that she had to be saved from the creepy robed strangers. Lerufic got her separated from the strangers with a harmless illusion. While speaking with her the strangers attacked with magic from hiding. Lerufic attacked one while Urza engaged the other. when Miranda recovered from her spell she ran away instead of aiding her companions. Urza stopped fighting and Lerufic told the lone stranger standing to leave or die. Then Urza attacked him and was struck down.

When the stranger took his companion and left, Lerufic grabbed Urzas stuff and returned to the camp and packed all the horses except Mirandas. He wrapped Silequay in a tent and put her on a horse, then with 5 horses he began the trip back to town paying the stone knight once again.

Getting back to town Lerufic updated the League charter and laid Silequay to rest. He looked deep into the three pieces of the dwarven artifact and decided he didn’t want to give up. He would find new members for the league, and this time he wouldn’t just take whoever decided to show up, he would assemble a team of skilled individuals, train with them and head back to Kuln when he felt that the league was ready, and comrade was built.

But whatever the case, Lerufic wasn’t done yet!

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...madness...MADNESS I SAY!
Really? ... *sigh* ...

After the wizardess cast thunderstrike it all went downhill. Rocks fell, everyone died.

There was a bit more to it than that, but that’ pretty much the gist of it. Leu the Bard survived. The Cleric, Miranda, as well…but she’s wandering the woodlands, quietly humming to herself. Others? Dead. At least the dwarven warrioress got a personal welcome to the dwarven afterlife from a famous dwarven hero…so there’s that.

But, madness seemed to take hold of anyone and everyone that night at the camp fire. Even the two new “warlock twins” (devotee’s of the Elder Gods, so I’m going to say that was the reason for the craziness). Fighting, spells cast at foes, friends or perceived friends or foe. Who knows? Everyone was kung-fu fighting up until the end.

So… Leu is on his way back to the city of Coruvon. I guess he and Miranda are the “only survivors”, and Miranda is off on her own. Being a nature cleric, she may just end up staying in the woods, valley and along the banks of the mighty river to live her life and enjoy nature.

And thus, this story ends. Uncompleted. It will, however, make for an interesting back story for the new crop of heroes who find themselves in the area…

;)

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The Ballad of Lerufic Verse 5
Never trust a statue

So after visiting and defeating the other two swamp gods we got back to the frog god with the requested items. He ate them and instead of giving us a key he gave us a riddle that is supposed to lead to a key. Except the riddle references things we know nothing about. Poor riddle etiquette. If I were to create a statue and hide it where nobody ever saw it and I told nobody about it then made it the answer to a riddle, how is anyone supposed to answer that?

With nothing to show for three months in the swamp we returned to the town of Coruvon. Everyone went back to the inn, but I have bigger plans. I found a house recently vacated by a wealthy merchant, and moved in. Got a new lock installed and hung my shingle on the door.

We decided to check out something in the swamp we had bypassed. and going off the boardwalk a we found a small cave. Further searching found a larger cave nearby. Inside was a dead dragon and many dead creatures. also in the cave was a huge horde of treasure. It looked like the treasure had been there a while, almost untouched. Obviously a trap, but what kind? There was too much to leave without at least testing. Every person who went to check the treasure disappeared, which was everyone but me.

I waited until the next morning and there was no sign of their return. Nothing I did had any effect or revealed any sign of what happened to my companions. I returned to Coruvon to look for more information.

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The Ballad of Lerufic Verse 4
Now we are getting somewhere.

The giant alligators were pretty rough. We took a couple days on the boardwalk to rest and recuperate. I prepped the alligator hide. The leather working tools in my cobblers kit were very helpful.

Then we carried on down the boardwalk to the place where the third item is supposed to be located, the pieces of amber. We traveled into the swamp towards the labyrinth of the rain god. We were blocked by a massive wall of thorns and brambles. As we followed it around we found an opening in the wall. We went in and explored corridors of thorny vines, eventually coming into a clearing with a large stone statue, supposedly of one of the three swamp ‘gods’ named Pluuge. Bearkiller saw a pool of water in the top of the statue and he pointed out some vegetable people lurking around the outside of the clearing.

When Bearkiller went to climb the statue and the veggy people attacked. We destroyed them and got the amber out of the pool in the statue. We then made it back to the boardwalk without incident. We headed back to give the final objects to the frog god statue. Then one evening on watch I heard something strange. When I looked out into the swamp I saw tentacles dragging some large mass towards us.

It was the third of the swamp gods coming to visit. It called itself Froom as it approached. So I got everyone up and we ran. it was almost as fast as we were and we got some distance, but knew it would eventually catch us, so we made our stand on the boardwalk. With teamwork and perseverance we managed to defeat Froom and destroy as much of the massive thing as we could.

Now we set out again, hopefully to make it to the frog god (probably called Rigool) and give him the items he asked for so we can get a key for the Dwarven fortress of Kuln. Then we can take care of the giants and then we can come back and fix the swamp and turn it back into what it is supposed to be and restore Coruvon.

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The Ballad of Lerufic Verse 3
Wait, what? Where are we?

The necromancer and the undead are mostly a blur now. I must have been hit on the head really bad and been concussed the last few days. I am informed that we slew the zombie dogs and the necromancer and a wight. They had apparently captured some sort of nature priest and we rescued her, which is good cause the zombies ate most of the ranger guarding the exit. That we found a huge heavy iron rose and took it back to the frog god statue. Then we decided to go to a town deeper into the swamp.

I am told these things but have no recollection of them. I remember wandering around a swamp village sticking out of the muck. Though there is a cobbled road here it is unused since much of it is mired below the mud and swamp water. The insects are incredible, even worse than in the swamp itself, probably due to the town itself.

There is a dock and a couple boats that ply a river that flows slowly by. One appears to be a large river boat, that even the hired help need invitations to board. It could have been a respite from this swamp town but entry proved too much hassle to deal with at the moment. We headed deeper into the ‘town’. Though smaller than Coruvon the population seems about the same.

On a smaller raised area near the center of town is a stone wall dividing the haves from the have nots. The old watchman at the gate refused to let us through, presumably because my companions looked like they came from a swamp. We went through anyway and were met by a well dressed robed lady. Most likely some sort of magical enforcer. It seems like wherever you go there are people who will oppress the poor to keep power in the hands of the wealthy.

Not needing to incite an incident we left the upper town, and the town in general. The ladies stayed, presumably craving the comfort of a bed and a warm bath. The barbarian and I have no need of such comforts in a place like that. False comforts built on lies. Something is going on in that town and it isn’t something I want to be involved in. I can only save one town at a time right now.

When they were done the ladies joined us outside town on a lovely sunny day with just enough breeze to cool us and keep off the bugs. Gathering our gear we headed back into the swamp, along the magical boardwalk of course. We traveled then without incident to the lake which was the second location marked by the frog statue.

It was a strangely strait river that flowed from a large deep natural pool. In the center of the pool was the basket the frog god sent us for. After some negotiation we traded the nixies who claimed the pool and the basket for a floating conveyance we crafted. Afterwards we took some time for a bit of fun with the nixies.

It was about two months of fun, but worth every minute. We gained a wonderful story and had an excellent time for rest and recuperation. And so we set out again for the final item requested by the frog statue, some amber. we traveled without event until we once again reached the magical boardwalk. Once there we places some runners under the basket and pulled it along with us.

I must admit to poor construction in the sled, which fell apart before we even got to the first intersection. We carried the basket awkwardly until we reached an intersection. Then we stopped and the sorcerer and myself attempted to make a more durable travel system for the basket while the cleric and barbarian ventured into the swamp to find food.

When we heard the loud barbaric yop and screams and splashing we ran to lend a hand. These were obviously not the sounds of a successful hunt. We arrived in time to see two large alligators holding our limp companions firmly in their mouths. I attempted to scare one into releasing the cleric while the sorcerer worked on angering the other one. Both worked and our companions were released. Shortly we managed to revive our friends and kill or scare off the animals.

We then returned to the boardwalk and took what we could use of the gigantic alligator. We began moving in the direction of the next marked location. With luck it will gather the amber and be back at the frog statue soon.

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The Ballad of Lerufic Verse 1
Ewww, Swampy

I have found refuge in this city surrounded by a fetid swamp. Once it was a semi thriving town. A great magical calamity occurred to sink the once fine forest into what is now called the Black Swamp. Now it holds mostly mercenaries and whores, even the merchants are abandoning the town. It was the trade with the dwarves of Kuln that kept Coruvon active, that and the need for a human military presence this close to the border.

Now the dwarves have been run out of Kuln and the city seems doomed to become just a military outpost where soldiers are sent as punishment. That is unless someone manages to restore Kuln. Who knows, maybe even the forest can be restored if the curse in the black swamp can be lifted.

But for me it is a good place to hide, going home has been put on hold until I can get the death sentence in that kingdom removed. I mean that guy deserved to die, even if he was a noble related to the king. Anyway I have found some people who might be willing to help restore Kuln if we can figure out how and gain enough skill and resources to accomplish it.

We gathered together and went to the The Alabaster Oracle to see if we might be able to find any clue as to what might accomplish our goal. She told us that the frog god in the swamp might be able to assist us. With little more than that and an old map the barbarian had acquired we headed along the magical wooden causeways into the black swamp.

It didn’t take long to find trouble, but a big fish wasn’t our greatest threat. We cooked it up and ate some on the first night. On the second day we met a group of human bandits, I have no idea what bandits do over a day into the swamp but they nearly killed two of our group before we ended their threat. Then a weird mystic appeared and blessed us, he somehow knew the ranger and spoke with her for a time before disappearing.

The next day we came to another hill and found the statue of the frog god, he sent us to retrieve items so that he could craft a key for Kuln. We went off in search of the items whose possible location he had indicated on our map. First we came to a long hill and were almost killed by a swarm of dire swamp wasps. Then we were attacked by alligators. Two of them nearly killing the barbarian.

I also met two lovely swamp maidens, who wanted to have a good time but were scared by their mother. Later we went to their house and they ruffied me. I suspect they were some sort of succubus, possibly swamp fairies of some sort, they fit the profile.

Eventually we came to the area where the one of the items might possibly be found. So we left the causeway and traveled into the swamp. There we climbed up a big mound of corpses and found an old shack. When a man came out he could only be a vile necromancer living on a mound of corpses so I shot him, but my aim must have been off cause he slammed the door.

We perused him into the hut and down into some sort of rotting corpse cellar. There were many rotting arms trying to hold us back from the walls and a couple of dead wolf like creatures.

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