Operation Gromdor

A Dragon Topiary‽
TOPIARY DON'T SWIM! THAT DOESN'T MAKE ANY SENSE!

Things that happened:

  • The group, having finished their shopping from the previous adventure, makes for the street where Gup Gup is accosted by the once-friendly Dwarf people, who are convinced the odd frog-like creature is ‘one of them,’ which is clearly a very bad thing.
  • Gup Gup and Vegas decide to try their hand at Diplomacy by rolling Intimidate checks. The bard stands back and just watches, only stepping in when the rest of the party realizes it’s surrounded by angry dwarves.
  • Just as Dwyddion secures passage out of the cavern, three Bone Claws come charging up the street. Much fighting is had, but the party is eventually triumphant. A 20ft long piece of quartz is harvested from an odd claw, and promptly sold.
  • The townsfolk, rather pleased with the sudden lack of undead fiends roaming the place, decide to throw a party in honor of the new heroes.
  • Passing time until the party that evening, Gup Gup couldn’t resist the urge to climb the cavern walls. From the top, he sees some sort of unknown, unidentifiable oddity beneath him. Naturally, he decides to drop a rock through it. Unable to find the rock upon scurrying back down, he enlists the help of Content Not Found: Belbela, who casts Light on the next stone, and upon it landing, discovers the rock is now a diamond!
  • Bolstered by their initial success, they decide to drop a bag of rocks through the expanse. A bowl of petunias A rabbit falls to its death, undoubtedly thinking “Oh no, not again.” It’s splattered stomach also now contains a large variety of small, random items.
  • Curious as to this turn of events, Moxie Crimefighter shoots an arrow into the anomaly, which lands on top of a nearby hut. Vegas reaches the hut first and procures the now leaf-like, metallic, and sharp object.
  • Moxie asks for it back, but Vegas has no intention of letting it go. Moxie deftly steals it from the half-orc and darts away. Vegas gives chase, and for a bit Moxie manages to hide herself, but eventually he finds the rogue and tackles her trying to get the silver arrow back.
  • During this spectacle, and in full view of the now curious dwarf onlookers, Dwyddion starts playing a baleful tune on his mandolin. Both the rogue and the monk stop their fighting and stare wide eyed at the bard who then suggests that monk never had an item and that he’s not really sure why he’s fighting with the rogue and that he’d much rather be drinking heavily in the tavern. The half-orc seems to be missing ten minutes of his memory, which he likely attributes to the heavy drinking.
  • Eventually the group gets gussied up and heads to the party. The bard does his usual performance, while the rest eat and hobnob. Temper dances with Harry, after he performs an impressive trick to gain entrance to the shindig. Moxie decides he wants to learn more from who he believes to be the leader of the town. Unfortunately, at that moment in time, Moxie believes the correct way to greet a Underdark Dwarven dignitary is to pull down his pants. He is incorrect in this assessment.
  • Zanz notices the gaffe and steps in hastily trying to smooth things over. For the most part it works.
  • Temper, not being accustomed to Dwarven Ale, drinks too much and blacks out for the next three days. She is rather surprised to find the rest of her group no longer in town and with nary a note in sight.
  • Meanwhile, the next morning the group heads off to combat a field of blood sucking flowers they had heard was causing much trouble. Coming across a field of flowers that happened to be growing out of corpses, Gup Gup decides to throw a torch at them. The vampiric flowers don’t like this gesture of peace, and they decide to attack. These rather irksome plants emit a paralyzing poison, which left a few party members out of commission, but without too much trouble, the group manages to defeat the carnivorous plants.
  • Despite the relatively (what does time mean in the Underdark??) early time of day, the group decides it wants to spend the rest of the day in town resting before setting off. Killing time, Belbela conjures a tiny bird and sends it into the expanse. It doesn’t come back. Poor birdie.
  • Trying again, Belbela ties a silken rope to a second conjured bird and sends it through. After a moment, she pulls the bird back and is shocked to note it is a peculiar shade of pink and that part of the rope is now ribbon.
  • At that moment, Temper conveniently stumbles through the street in a drunken haze. Asking Temper to talk to the bird, the party learns that whatever is through the anomaly is not natural and is dark and scary. The bird is very displeased. Temper decides she isn’t done hibernating and goes back to sleep. The group parades the bright pink bird around town.
  • The next morning everyone (sans Temper and Harry Potter) set off in search of the water filled cavern, which had also been giving the locals some trouble. Upon arriving, they find the cavern filled with water in a way it shouldn’t, and filled with creatures that had no reason for surviving underwater, including a dragon topiary. Gup Gup curses the Underdark. Again.
  • Not thrilled with the prospects, the group decides it has no intention of entering the globe of water to fight the creatures, so it heads back to town. A local suggests that there might be a way out through the field of corpses that the flowers had inhabited. Unfortunately a number of people who have gone that way never came back, and those that did were horribly maimed.
  • Figuring a maiming is better than underwater monster topiary, the party heads off in that direction.
  • Eventually, they come to a large stone room with a door on the opposite side. Dwyddion and Vegas notice that the number ‘7’ is carved in the wall in Draconic. Moxie alerts the group that the room is trapped and to stay back. He valiantly attempts to disarm the trap, but unfortunately sets it off in the process. Now the whole room is trapped and any movement into the room would find the occupant ensnared. If only they had a druid who could fly…
  • After some thought, Dwyddion suggests that they grab the corpses from before and make a bridge out of them. Throwing the corpses onto the floor, the spikes ensnare the already dead bodies granting safe passage to Moxie. Vegas and Gup Gup traverse the bridge to aid the hurting rogue.
  • Prying spikes off of Moxies hands, the still immobile rogue manages to disarm the trap while the other two are trying to free her feet. With the trap disabled, the group wanders into the room looking at the door on the other side of the room.
  • The door is hingeless and does not appear to open. While staring at the door dumbly, Zanz notices a secret door off to the side. After pointing the door out, Moxie is able to open it. Following the tiny tunnel forward, they come to a room that magically lights up and has six doors around its perimeter.
  • Dwyddion and Vegas point out that the doors are numbered ‘1-6’, also in Draconic. Vegas opens each door only to find a rock wall behind each. Remembering the ‘7’ in the previous room, Dwyddion suggests opening doors 1 and 6 simultaneously. Unfortunately, nothing happens. Building on this theory the group tries various ways to create a magical door. Moxie has an epiphany about the doors needing to be detached from the useless stone walls. Eventually, an archway is built out of doors 1, 2, and 4. This having been done, a magical portal opens.
  • Not able to see where the portal goes, Vegas jumps through in a leap of faith. Appearing on a mountainside in what still appears to be the Underdark, Vegas notes that there is no portal back. After waiting a few moments, Gup Gup throws a rope through the portal, holding on to the other side. Noticing the rope, Vegas tugs on it. Unfortunately, his orc heritage shows through and he tugs a bit hard, and Gup Gup goes flying through.
  • The group decides to throw caution to the wind and pass through. They soon find themselves in the same fate as Vegas, on the side of a mountain in what they guess is still the Underdark. They decide to climb up the mountain, and remembering the druid that may decide to follow them, Vegas leaves a note in a pouch by the portal.
  • At the top of the mountain a few of the party think they see flickering lights and what is, they hope, Lantern Place, the place of lanterns, which the wizard told them about back when. Heading down the mountain, some of the group thinks it’s being followed.
  • Eventually, the group is pretty sure it’s being followed, but can’t see anything. At some point, they decide to camp for the night, setting up watch. Vegas and Moxie take the first watch with nothing happening.
  • During the second watch, Dwyddion and Zanz hear something nearby, as does Moxie who hasn’t been able to fall asleep in this strange land. As something(s) moves around on the outskirts, Moxie and Dwyddion vanish into the darkness. Dywddion magically whispers to Moxie and Zanz that there’s something out there but he can’t see it. Zanz starts pelting magically lit rocks at whatever is lurking in the darkness. This causes it to sink into the shadows.
  • Zanz starts throwing rocks at the sleeping party members, wakes up Vegas, and tells him there’s something lurking nearby. Vegas decides its a good idea to charge the mystery thing lurking in the darkness, but is unable to successfully tackle it. He does however get a look at it and curses loudly.
  • This does not bode well for the party…
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God Damned Wizards!
Nothing good ever happens when one suddenly "shows up."

Things that happened

  • Dwyddion, Gromdor, Temper, & Zanz all wake from their respective inns, hungry for breakfast. Unfortunately, there seems to be no one about. Heading out into the street they find only chaos.
  • Meeting up, the party wonders what is going on. Gromdor, the smooth talker that he is, decides to interrogate a doomsday cultist on a soapbox. Not getting satisfactory answers, Gromdor steals the man’s soapbox and heads off looking for loot to put in it.
  • The rest of the party, failing to notice the fire raining from the sky, get whisked away only to wake up somewhere in a field on a distant plane next to a number of strangers (Vegas, Moxie Crimefighter, Belbella, Gup Gup) and an old wizard.
  • The wizard tells those that have woken that the world needs saving. Some important information was given, but the entire party wasn’t awake at the time and so missed it.
  • Dwyddion wakes up just as the wizard disappears and notices a rock where he had just been sitting. He goes over to investigate and finds a strange carvings on the rock and cannot make heads or tails of it. A little frog person, Gup Gup, comes over and decides that licking it and then rubbing it would be a good idea.
  • The party immediately falls deep into the Underdark, landing unharmed.
  • Finding themselves suddenly in a dark cavern with what appears to be exits at either direction, the party has little recourse but to set off.
  • After a bit of stumbling, the group finds themselves face to face with a number of large bats
    who were doing quite a bit of damage until Belbella cast a silence spell knocking out their echolocation, rendering them effectively blinded.
  • The battle eventually ends, the party a little worse for the wear, continues on. Dwyddion notices a skeleton in the corner of the room they were about to leave and goes to investigate. Obviously no longer in need of his possessions, Dwyddion feels no shame in looting his corpse of quite a few objects, immediately donning the hooded cloak of Elven Kind. The rest of the loot was distributed amongst the rest of the party.
  • Continuing through the cavern upstream, the party eventually finds themselves in a larger room with a ledge, dropping about 80 feet below. Only moments later the party is surrounded by grimlocks wanting the shinies the group is carrying.
  • Thankfully, the grimlocks are not as tough as the bats and fall rather quickly despite their superior numbers. Much looting was had, though much healing was also needed. What remaining spells were used up and the party made camp for the night, after tossing the dead grimlocks over the ledge.
  • Next “morning”, Gup Gup decides he wants to find out what is at the bottom of the ledge. After much effort, and oddly, much surprise, he found dead grimlocks. After having his fill of swimming around in entrails, he climbs back up the cliff.
  • Continuing on toward the exit, Dwyddion, Gup Gup, and Moxie take the lead. Unfortunately, Moxie didn’t notice the tiny traps that were set off by them walking. This catches the attention of several individuals who demand to know what is happening. Gup Gup starts floundering in his attempt to win their affection, so the bard makes a bow and lets them no we mean them no harm. Realizing they are dwarves, Dwyddion converses with them in Dwarven about ancestral lines, stone masonry, and all sorts of information boring to anyone but a dwarf.
  • After gaining their trust, and gathering information on who the prettiest dwarf in the city is, the party is admitted to the Dwarven safe haven, check out the tavern, and exchange gems and gold for new pretty items.
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The Black Swan
"I don't know what happened... I'M NOT GAY!"

Things that happened:

  • Group travels to Pasea City following the circus. Dwyddion learned that a possible culprit of child slavery had ducked into the ranks of the circus, and so they should try to keep up with the circus to investigate.
  • Dwyddion and Bucket hang out in Gateway on the Rocks. Dwyddion hobnobs and eventually starts performing for the crowd. He starts off slowly with an average performance, but ends the evening with a stellar performance that leaves the audience moved.
  • Dwyddion makes four groupies and successfully flirts with them all. While convincing Rae to come up to his room with him, he slips a note into the cute boy’s pocket telling him to come to his room in an hour’s time.
  • After a natural 20 in bed, Dwyddion convinces Rae that it would be best if she leaves in order to not sully her reputation. He promises to meet her tomorrow for lunch.
  • The cute boy shows up and we learn his name is Zaileniss. With an equally high charisma score, the two have a wild night of things. The group nicknames him Zanzibar, and then Zanzi, by the end of the event. Zanz is not asked to leave.
  • Gromdor and Temper decide to go check out the circus, where Gromdor successfully gets a tightrope walker (Kelly Roqomore) to drink a love potion after her act with the hopes that he can cause Temper to become jealous. Kelly suddenly finds herself inexplicably amorous with Gromdor.
  • They all go back to the Haven of the Pine, where they meet Caul who is an acrobat in the circus. Caul finds Kelly’s affection to the ugly dwarf odd. Much hilarity ensues as Gromdor tries to get everyone to drink the love potion, and he himself takes drinks trying to prove its trustworthiness. Caul invites them back to a real showing of the circus with special seats, and rescues Kelly from Gromdor. Temper eventually agrees to have a single drink of the “water”.
  • Next day Dwyddion finds out that someone broke into the home of an old lady, burned her Winter Veil tree and decorations, and stole her presents.
  • Upon investigation, they find out that a single black feather was the only clue found. Nothing else in the house was touched or stolen.
  • Bucket sets off to replace the presents and decorations, Dwyddion heads back to the Gateway on the Rocks to make his lunch date with Rae.
  • Shortly into lunch, and with impeccable timing, Temper interrupts Dwyddion’s lunch date to give him his Winter Veil gift. He thanks her and tells her about the old lady’s plight. With her naturally high Christmas score, she immediately sets off. Rae follows.
  • After learning more, Temper and Dwyddion set off for the police station hoping to convince them to let Harry Potter track the feather. The police eventually agree, and Harry leads the group to the circus. After the bird keeper doesn’t let Harry approach the birds, they run into Caul.
  • Temper explains the situation to Caul, who is somewhat offended that the carneys are being blamed. He brings them to the bird keeper and Temper realises that the feather doesn’t belong to any of them. Dwyddion is skeptical of Caul.
  • While leaving the carnival, Harry Potter picks up a scent in the woods and takes off. Dwyddion and Temper follow until they reach a tall tree. Noticing black feathers on the ground, they look up to find a rather large nest.
  • Not having any way to climb the tree and night time fast approaching, they head back to town agreeing to meet up the next day.
  • Dwyddion makes another steller performance and makes more admirers. Zanz is there and follows Dwyddion up to his room where they spend the night.
  • Meanwhile, while setting up the old lady’s new decorations, Gromdor accidentally took some of his own love potion and became enamoured with Bucket. Bucket finds the dwarfs seeming affection odd, but capitalizes on it, putting Gromdor to work with him. After they finish and Bucket walks out to go get a present for her, Gromodor offers Bucket some “water”, and the unknowing Bucket drinks it, confusing himself as he suddenly actively likes the dwarf. Gromdor asks Bucket to go to the Tavern to just get a couple drinks, and Bucket seems to find nothing wrong with this, continuing to drink the love potion unknowingly. They both get drunk, and… well. The two become strangely intertwined. Gromdor rolls a natural 1 on a certain check. They spend the evening drinking and … disappearing to Gromdor’s room before finally passing out.
  • The next morning Dwyddion has breakfast with Zanz unaware that Gromdor has just woken up, naked, covered in the blood of Bucket whose throat had been slit.
  • Gromdor emerges from his room and runs downstairs, still naked, still covered in blood. The authorities are quickly summoned. Gromdor is quickly arrested for murder.
  • Gromdor manages to wrest himself from his captors and runs down the street, still naked, still covered in blood.
  • Caul and Temper spot the naked, frantic dwarf sprinting down the street with police chasing him, and Caul takes off after the dwarf, catching him, and convincing Gromdor to wear his hat of disguise, which causes the authorities to lose him.
  • Caul buys a cloak for Gromdor to wear, but Gromdor has other ideas. He decides to rob the shopkeeper instead. Caul, in disbelief, grabs his hat back and leaves the shop. Temper stays with Gromdor at the River Loved Bear.
  • Temper finds out what has happend and fetches her brother, who is rather unconcerned as surely there are clerics in this town who could be of assistance. Zaileniss runs off to fetch such a priest. They later find out they do not have enough money to bring Bucket back to life.
  • Temper and Caul manage to convince Gromdor to calm down and sneak out of town. Temper leads Gromdor while Caul fetches Dwyddion, who then says goodbye to Zanz.
  • The priest that had accompanied Zaileniss back to resurrect Bucket pulls Zailen aside, and has a brief, quiet conversation with him. He tells him that its time for him to leave the ‘Winds fully and to help this motley group. He’s ready, and this is the next journey forward in his life.
  • Outside of town the group decides to head to the tree with the nest as the black feathers seem center around the problems. They are unaware that Zanz has followed them, no one thinking to look behind them.
  • Once at the tree, the rather acrobatic Caul makes his way up to the nest, taking time to show off here and there. Once reaching the nest, he goes crazy and transforms into his evil self, a rather large and disturbing humanoid black bird.
  • After a trying battle where Gromdor, unarmoured and with a table leg as a weapon was temporarily blinded, the group manages to kill Caul, thanks to the help of Zanz who was standing a small distance behind them in the forest.
  • Just before dying, Caul dramatically flew up into his nest, knocked into it, and tried to grab onto it to not fall, sends both himself and his nest toppling over and the loot fell to the ground, barely missing and showering Gromdor with splinters. Turns out Caul was attracted to shiny objects, which is what caused him to kill Bucket.
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Dueling Mandolins
Bard off!

After arriving in Lerik, the party reaches the tavern The Lovely Plate. Dinner is served, and Dwyddion heads to the temple of Pelor to find out more about the ring. A grumpy cleric informs him it’s 100gp and an hour. Dwyddion temporarily heads back to the tavern to eat dinner. He there informs Temper that he learned of a Druidic Temple in town.

Heading back to the church, Dwyddion is informed that it’s a heavily, twice cursed Ring of Wizardry. The cleric is all to happy to be rid of it. Back at the tavern, Dwyddion decides he needs to make a name for himself and have a musical duel with the local bard. After a few mediocre performances, Dwyddion pulls off a few exceptional performances, much to the approval of all listening. He even won a platinum from a young couple in love after wooing the couple by deftly pulling a flower from within his cloak.

Trying to gather information, Dwyddion discovered that there was a substantial reward to find and bring back the bones of Wailing Jenny. Entering the cave, the party comes to a fork in the tunnel and decides to follow the path that leads to the river.

Gromdor tries to swim across and almost drowns. In a heroic, albeit out of character, feat of strength, Dwyddion yanks on the safety rope and pulls him back to shore. Temper then attempts to jump the river while straddling Harry Potter, and thankfully succeeds. She ties the other end of the rope to another stalactite, and the party shuffles across, only to be met by two rather annoying ghasts. After a lengthy battle—where Dwyddion and Gromdor were both paralyzed, and bardic music saved the day!—the corpse were looted (a couple of rings, and two swords).

The party found bones in one corner of the cavern. Dwyddion, using his bardic knowledge, ascertains the sex to most likely to have been a female. Bucket, for some reason, pokes the bones with his sword. An angry ghost rises and Dwyddion quickly makes a diplomacy check and succeeds in keeping it from eating Gromdor’s face. Despite this Gromdor and Temper are feared by the ghost and drop their belongings and run!

Bucket and Dwyddion continue to talk to the ghost who says she can only rest when her three little boys are returned to her. When asked how she died, she says that looking for her children, she came across two men who decided she couldn’t live to tell the tale. One was tall, blonde and handsome with a flower-shaped scar on his face. The other taller, lankier, less-intimidating, youthful, darker-haired man.

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