Episode 11 : Dark Haven
 

Day 74. The party leave the Phaethon camp. Guided by Farren, they are taken to an entrance to goblin tunnels under the desolation that will take them to Dark Haven. Farren describes the route they must take and leaves them to travel alone.

Towards the evening they are attacked by an elder chaos beast, it turns Hildegard to a chaotic puddle before being defeated. Luckily the party have the knowledge and the skill to restore him to sanity.

Day 75. After resting in the tunnels they continue on. The party are ambushed by a camp of fiendish goblins but manage to drive them off after Moon generates some giant ants (much to the delight of Grog).

Eventually the party reach a large open cavern. Two exits are visible, one leads to the basement of Dark Haven and is surrounded by bodies, the other leads eventually to the surface and the town of Flotsam. As they approach the bodies they rise and are revealed to be wights, they wear the armour of Lily Knights.

The wights defend the entrance to Dark Haven and attack the party, eventually they are driven off and destroyed after stealing a level from Pecan. After she is restored the party rest for the night.

Day 76. Grog investigates the entrance to Dark Haven. It is blocked by barrels but still he alerts guards on the other side, luckily they believe the noise to be the guard wights. The party rest and prepare for a night assault.

Day 77. At midnight the party enter the fortress. They kill nearby guards and free some prisoners. One is Ivor Dulet, a contract blacksmith whose work quality was not up to the ISO standards of the Dark Knights, the other is Murance Brandis, a knight of the Legion of Steel who attempted to infiltrate the fortress. The prisoners reveal that the fortress has two basement levels and an “unholy artefact” is kept somewhere within them. Above the basement are the living and admin levels of the fortress proper where hundreds of Dark Knights and their squires are housed. The door to the basement from the living quarters is heavily secured.

The prisoners are released and the party continue on. After exploring most of the basement level Hildegard manages to wake some Dark Knight acolytes. In the ensuing battle the entire level is woken, guards appear and the fortress alarm is sounded.

After a short discussion the party push on to the second level of the basement. Here they fight a small force of Dark Knight officers and squires rallying to the horn. Also found are several groups of dreadcats and dreadspiders. After a lengthy battle with these forces they eventually make it to the door of the ritual cloister.

As the warning horns blare elsewhere in the keep, the party enter the ritual cloister. Here they sight a black alter, on it is a gem about the size of a child’s fist - it glows with a malevolent green light. Shiloh is dumbstruck by the sight and is of little use thereafter.

As Grog picks it up he suddenly feels weaker, luckily he quickly hides it in his backpack before it can affect him further. The party is attacked suddenly by a greater shadow, failing to turn it they run. They hurry back through the levels of the basement to the goblin tunnels, the shadow ambushes them at several points before fading back into the walls.

Only in the main cavern of the goblin tunnels are the party able to make a stand. Here they eventually defeat the shadow, only to watch it retreat and disappear back into the corrupted Tear of Mishakel. The party quickly move out along the tunnel that will eventually lead to the surface.

Several hours later they rest to regain some spells. After healing the party collapse in exhaustion, but are woken again by a small band of Dark Knight scouts that have been pursuing them. After a vicious battle in the confines of the tunnel they are eventually victorious.

The party wake in the early afternoon and walk through to the evening before again camping in the tunnels.

Day 78. The party walk until about midday when they exit the tunnels. In the distance they can see the town of Flotsam across frozen marshy swampland; it is mid afternoon before they can reach its gates. They enter the town and call in at The Jetties inn near the southwest gate; here they meet the proprietor Bridget Stubbletoes and book a large room for two nights.

They learn that the ruler of the town is Lord Toede - an ancient hobgoblin who appears to be immortal, in any case assassination attempts show no permanent success and most have given up trying. Lord Toede has recently gained some rare dragons eggs and also receives regular shipments of books and scrolls; apparently he has a large and well appointed personal library.

The party also learn of rumours of hooded and cloaked figures, humpback bandits who have recently been seen breaking into local basements and cellars. None have yet been captured or killed.

The Dark Knights keep a small detachment in the city, no more than a few men to manage their own dealings with the busy port.

Otherwise the town is a general haven for vagabonds, outcasts, scoundrels, rogues, and dregs; all living together in relative harmony.

The party rest at the inn for the night.

Day 79. Moon asks her god if Lord Toede has the information required to purify the corrupted Tear and receives an affirmative answer. The party go to the City Hall of Flotsam to petition to meet with Lord Toede, there they are told to fill out an application and in return are scheduled be interviewed by Subordinate Office 2 the following day. The party return to the inn to rest.

Day 80. Moon again asks a question of her god but receives an unintelligible answer. She feels poorly.

The party travel to meet with the Subordinate Officer but find their application rejected. They complete another application and are told to be ready for an interview with Subordinate Office 3 the following day. They spend the rest of the day at the markets selling some items for 1450 Steel. They return to the inn and rest.

Day 81. Moon asks her god if the current plan of action will allow the party to meet with Lord Toede within a week, the answer is that it is possible but unlikely. She still feels poorly, she feels the light to be overly bright and hot.

The party go to meet the Subordinate Officer but again find their application rejected.

They travel to Lord Toede’s mansion on the peninsular but find it well very protected and guarded, as only a person who has lived several lifetimes and been killed on a number of occasions can organise. Talking with the guards they discover that Lord Toede rarely leaves the mansion. They return to the inn to rest.

 

 
(c) 2007 Dragonlance Roleplaying Campaign Journal by Chris Burton  
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