View Full Version : The Town of WinterHearth

Pages : [1] 2 3

2007-02-01, 12:37 PM
(( WinterHearth is based on the city of IceRazer, in the Frostburn campaign book. It is not on an iceberg, but otherwise uses the same map. ))

Far to the north of town, a city in the frozen arctic has been given new life. Werefox settlers from the Temple of Inari have claimed the ruins and are re-building the city to house their growing population.
The dark evil of the Blood Palace is no more: instead, the new Temple of Inari rises to greet the sun. While the gardens are more subdued than the temple in Town, such arctic life as can be nurtured thrives on the temple grounds.
The Town Hall is cleaned and reopened, and already business progresses. Zak-Ziril NorZilliar, better known as Zak, has come to be the regent of the city.
The Razerwing Guards still patrol the sky. These Abishai of every color, bound by powerful contracts, help defend the city.
The former towers of the axe lords now house the city guards. Some were temple guards in Town, some were militia in Balnaroth. Others have travelled from around the planes, hearing of a new homeland for fox-kind.
Five miles east of the town gates, the dwarven blue-ice mines provide a critical source of trade and income. The magically adept foxes take the blue ice and craft it into weapons, armor, and other items for sale. Ships are already beginning to once again dock as a routine stop on their trade routes.

All is not happy, though. The crumbled, haunted ruins of WinterHearth palace still stand on a hill outside of the city: a temptation and a snare for adventurers.

2007-02-01, 12:55 PM
Amidst the general bustle of moving in, a sizeable party of white-furred foxes with pale blue eyes enters through the southwestern gates. Heavily dressed in the pelts of Winter Wolves, these ice foxes walk carefully but confidently to the Town Hall and speak with a very surprised Zak.

Distant cousins originating on the Plane of Ice, they come to help establish this city of foxes. Zak is thrilled both by this previously unknown strain of fox, and by the assistance of such knowledgable helpers.
For their part, the Ice Foxes revel in the opportunity to leave their tiny frozen villages in the arctic wilderness. They are also overcome with emotion to learn of Inari. That there even was a goddess for their people was unknown to them. In gratitude, they use their ice magic to help raise the temple in record time.

The flood of people from the Town is continually augmented by a steady trickle of villagers from the tundra, and refugees from other lands who arrive by any means they can. With the help of the ice foxes, buildings are repaired rapidly, hunting is more successful, and the merchants are forced to haggle and deal with a far more knowledgeable population than they had hoped.

One young ice fox finds his way through the portal...

2007-02-02, 11:16 PM
Far away to the north the foxes celebrate the first full-moon festival in the new city.

2007-02-17, 12:47 PM
Arden flies in through the portal and looks around at the new surroundings with interrest

2007-02-17, 01:05 PM
The city proper is well underway, and the new temple is built. City patrols are regular, and the razorwing guards fly overhead keeping watch. Routine patrols go out from the city to keep dangerous monsters from encroaching, and to keep the trade routes open.

2007-02-17, 01:09 PM
Arden smiles and flies into the temple.

2007-02-17, 01:15 PM
The ice-fox priests are somewhat surprised to see a dragon fly in, but the foxes from Town reassure them. The acting head priest comes up with a smile.

Greetings. Your pardon that we can't recall your name. How fares your father?

2007-02-17, 01:20 PM
Arden bows his head slightly I'm Arden. And he's doing fine as far as I know of. he looks around I thought I would come here and see if I could help out with something.

2007-02-17, 01:25 PM
The priest considers

Governor Zak would know better than I do. I know that construction and rebuilding continues to occupy the time of a great many people. Training the RazorWings is also a full time task. There are monster-hunting patrols that leave the city every other hour, and of course something has to be done about the old ruins, someday...

2007-02-17, 01:28 PM
Sounds like there's plenty to do then. Perhaps I should see this Zak. Can you tell me where to find him?

2007-02-17, 07:25 PM
The priest nods

He is in the Town Hall, a bit north and east of here. Go out and turn right - you can't miss it.

2007-02-17, 07:38 PM
Arden smiles and nods Thank you for your help, I'll go there. he says and flies out, making his way to the Town Hall.

2007-02-17, 07:41 PM
(( All of my personalities say hello. ))

At the town hall, Arden is escorted into a large room where a werefox who looks strikingly similar to Fenric is seated at a table. The herald speaks to the man to anounce Arden, and it is only when Zak-Ziril stands that his difference in height and build is noticeable, and the fact that the tip of his tail is black rather than the white that Arden is used to.

2007-02-17, 07:46 PM
Arden blinks a bit but smiles Greetings, I have come to see if I can help out with something in this place.

2007-02-17, 07:54 PM
Zak smiles and looks at Arden with an appraising eye

That rather depends on what you are good at, young man. What is it you do?

2007-02-17, 07:59 PM
Hunting, defence, guarding and keeping an eye on things, but I could help with more mundane work as well, like rebuilding. But I have come here in the hope of getting some more practical experience with combat.

2007-02-17, 08:03 PM
Zak chuckles

Combat, is it? The monster sweeps are always looking for fresh volunteers. Go to the old Axelord barracks across the street from the temple: they'll assign you to a group with a... vacancy.

Zak's smile is somewhat grim, and he returns to his desk.

2007-02-17, 08:07 PM
Thank you, I shall do so. he bows slightly and leaves again, going to the barracks.

2007-02-17, 10:18 PM
In the main barracks of the town guard, Karl is relaxing after a long day. Without warning, his brother steps out of the shadows behind the heavy tapestries that line the room.

You miserable cretin! Renrik is in the temple trying to kill Mikhail!

Karl groans

Oh no... he came back?

Kazuki glares every manner of destructive implement, spell, and evil curse there is at his brother.

YOU WERE JUST HOPING HE'D STAY AWAY?! Regardless of which one you were hoping would stay out of our lives, get over there and stop Renrik!

Karl stands up and runs out to the temple.

2007-03-06, 08:53 PM
Karl comes back from a grueling day of hunting monsters in the cold wastes outside of town.

Perhaps it's not a war, but it's honest work...

2007-03-16, 09:03 PM
Fenix runs through the portal and gasps as he feels the weather. Flames blaze up around him, along with his wings, and he grits his teeth.
Ignoring his extreme discomfort, he looks around.

2007-03-16, 09:06 PM
The ice-fox priests look at Fenix in some surprise

{ ice-vulpine } Can we help you, sir?

2007-03-16, 09:11 PM
Fenix curses, not having ANY idea what language they were speaking.
I need to find a druidess!

2007-03-16, 09:16 PM
The priests chatter with each other, finally one comes forward

There druid here, ha. No vixen-druid, nahi. Brother ki Fenric naam Thonar. Ja door.

The priest points at a door.

2007-03-16, 09:17 PM
Fenix lets out a few more curses and goes to the door, hoping the druid would know of another druid.

2007-03-16, 09:22 PM
((The Vodka is cheap, and makes you warmer. ;) Just saying if you go for that option it's okay too. Either is fine.))

2007-03-16, 09:26 PM
Fenix walks into the room, and sees what he would swear is Fenric... Sitting in a brown robe in meditation, in what looks like a beautiful aspen grove. The air is warm (75 F) and moist, and fragrant with moss, grass, and spring flowers.

2007-03-16, 09:28 PM
((I might do that, but Fenix would much rather find a druidess))

Fenix goes in and winces at the moisture, but goes over to the druid.
Sir? I'm in desperate need of help, but I'm not sure where to look. I need to find a druidess.

2007-03-16, 09:35 PM
Thonar looks up, and speaks with the quiet confidence that Fenric tries so hard to imitate.

I'm afraid that there are relatively few women who follow such pursuits. The Mayoress of Town is one that I know of.

Thonar stands up, and transforms into a human(!) (( Not an elf... And now some of the schism in the NorZilliar family comes to light ))

I am quite capable of druidic assistance, I assure you.

2007-03-16, 09:37 PM
Fenix sighs.
I don't know where Gwen is. And I don't know why, but I need a druidess, not a druid.

2007-03-16, 09:45 PM
Arac stumbles to the city's edge, cold air biting through the soaked pelts on his back, snow seeping in through the tears in his boots. Worse that what seeped in, though, was what managed to seep out. Grievous wounds drip blood from the many wounds on the proud barbarian's body, his chin held high with a shaking neck though the rest of him threatened to fall at any moment. One leg begins to drag more than the other as he doggedly walks into the town, bags pulled behind him in the winter snow. When his boots meet the streets of the city, he takes a few more steps before he collapses.

2007-03-16, 09:46 PM
Thonar Arches his eyebrows and contemplates

There is an ice-vixen who can help you. She is not near here, though.

Thonar sighs and allows the warmpth and greenery to leave the room. Thonar heads toward a large block of smooth ice in the corner.

We can use this to transport.

2007-03-16, 09:48 PM
Fenix shudders, then nods.

2007-03-16, 10:02 PM
Thonar sighs

Are you aware of the druidic spell "Transport via Plants"? This works the same way... it is "Transport via Ice"

The city guards pick Arac up and bring him to the temple. The healers see to his needs as any other wander of the ice.

2007-03-16, 10:04 PM
Fenix gulps and nods again.

2007-03-16, 10:14 PM
Thonar casts the spell, and a portal appears in the glacier, showing a village.

Let us go.

Thonar walks through the portal.

2007-03-16, 10:15 PM
Fenix hurries through, ignoring the ice.

2007-03-16, 10:20 PM
There is no sense of cold, just of displacement. Then the two are standing in the square of a tiny village off in the wilds of the frozen plains.

Follow, and smartly, if you know what's good for you.

Thonar hurries off with impossibly long strides toward a large hut on the edge of town.

2007-03-16, 10:21 PM
Fenix follows quite quickly.

2007-03-16, 10:24 PM
Thonar leads the way to a reasonably large hut. There is a line at the door, and he sighs.

{ ice-vulpine } My apologies, friends, but this is an emergency of the gods.

Thonar walks past them and the startled doorkeeper and heads inside.

2007-03-16, 10:26 PM
Fenix follows him quite quickly. :P

2007-03-16, 10:46 PM
An aged, white-furred vixen sits crosslegged on the floor. She does not even look up as Thonar and Fenix enter.

Spirit of shadow, spirit of flame, have come to me in love's bright name. Neither honest, neither sincere, but to neither is the situation clear.

2007-03-16, 10:47 PM
Fenix raises an eyebrow and waits.

2007-03-16, 10:50 PM
Thonar shakes his head

Karicha, we come requesting your aid.

I know

Thonar closes his eyes and looks frustrated

And this young man says he needs a druidess

I know

Thonar's shoulders drop

Can you please come with us and help

Can the spirit of fire not speak for himself? Or has the cold stolen his voice already

2007-03-16, 10:53 PM
Why should I speak when words are not needed to tell you my troubles?

2007-03-16, 10:56 PM
The druidess cackles in a dry voice

A bottle of vodka and a skein of cloth could have been found on the first floor of the tavern, young man. What truly sent you to seek me rather than that?

2007-03-16, 10:58 PM
I thought that magic would be more effective. I thought that the latter option wasn't what was best.

2007-03-16, 11:14 PM
The old woman's deep blue eyes snap open.


Thonar winces

Oh, by all the gods... surely you could have done better than that....

The woman snarls at Thonar

Silence, you! Too much with the city folk are you entangled.

She glares at Fenix, and points a finger that is as much a weapon as a digit


(( Her name was Ruby Bland: A dimunitive black woman who happned to be the lunch room monitor at my High School. Her voice could halt a football player twice her size in his tracks and make him walk off to detention as meekly as any kindergarten student. "BOOOOOYYYY! YOU THINK YOU GONNA WALK RIGHT BY ME?!?!? YOU GET YOUSELF DOWN TO DETENTION BEFORE I GET MEAN!". This voice was what was just used on Fenix. ))

She looks at him as if cockroaches were a distinct improvement

Efficiency is for skinning a dead buck. Efficiency is for bringing fish in from the sea. Efficiency is for half-hearted attempts at management re-organizations.

You either love her, or you do not. Speak to me of efficiency again, and as a snow-crawler will you spend a thousand years!

2007-03-16, 11:21 PM
By the celestial fires don't twist my words, woman!
Fenix glares at her, his voice heated and obviously displeased.
I gave up everything I held dear to keep her and your damnable, petty quibbles over word choice are NOT going to stop me from helping her!
Now are you going to help me or am I going to drag you back there and MAKE you help me?
Despite his normal stance on freedom of choice... Fenix looks like he is quite ready to drag her there.

2007-03-16, 11:22 PM
((Oh! Go with the snow crawler! They're cute!))

2007-03-16, 11:28 PM
The woman smirks

A chance you may yet have. Remember this with her, and sorrow may you yet avoid.

She stands shakily to her feet, her age more apparent when standing

You language my first is not, but no small green creature am I. Still, the years weigh heavily. Nevertheless, will I come to her aid.

She looks at Fenix

For the sake of love will I aid the prophecy, never efficiency.

Thonar looks at the floor. She notices and cackles.

If not for Amrinala, I would let his fire go out. His passion is fleeting and I trust not his constancy.

The old woman totters toward the door

Shall the aged, then, lead the young?

2007-03-16, 11:32 PM
Fenix goes out the door.

2007-03-16, 11:43 PM
Thonar scurries to retake the lead, and then lead Fenix and Karicha back across the portal to the temple in WinterHearth, and thence through the portal back to the temple in Town.

2007-03-18, 04:09 PM
((Just for the record, there is a dying man on your streets with sacks full of treasure slung behind him.))

2007-03-18, 09:13 PM
(( Sorry. I'm all but not here on weekends, and Friday night was rather late for me - I ended up blindered to the story that I was doing. ))

The WinterHearth guard find Arac and gently take him to the Temple. The healers tend to his wounds and apply appropriate healing spells.

2007-03-18, 10:32 PM
((No worries, I just wanted to be sure you saw, with all the druidess stuff that was going on last time 'round.))

Arac's eyes open slowly. "My treasure?" he asks frantically, flinging himself to sit up before his wounds were properly healed and grimacing in pain. Laying back down, panting, he asks again "Treasure?"

2007-03-18, 10:49 PM
The NPC priests look at the bags that were brought with the mand

Presuming you mean these bags, sir, they are here.

(( The town watch is lawful evil. Anything but nice, but they wouldn't let him be robbed ))

2007-03-18, 11:03 PM
"Good. Me thank for you is help," the barbarian says, hoping his abstract command of their tongue is good enough to pass the message and tossing the priests a few trinkets of gold and gems. "For the services of your giving with many kinds," he fumbles, limping out the door with as much speed as he can manage, dragging the load behind him. His wounds strain, bloody patches on his bandages growing slightly, but he's clearly used to it and can manage the burden, at least until he gets to another town that will patch up the broken warrior.
"I never here," he says ominously to the town watch as he leaves, not awaiting a full response before trudging off into the snow.

2007-03-19, 11:28 AM
The watch considers the man as he leaves, and a quiet message is sent to Governor Zak. The governor decides it's not enough to warrant undue attention, as the city is always watchful for attacks.

2007-03-19, 03:35 PM
Arden flies in through the portal and finally, after weeks or so, manages to reach the barracks.

2007-03-19, 03:41 PM
At the barracks, he finds several sergants trying to do their best while Karl was away. One comes over to Arden.

What brings you here, young man.

2007-03-19, 03:43 PM
Arden bows politely I am looking for work and was sent here. I hear there is plenty of work with hunting and protecting the city.

2007-03-19, 03:50 PM
The sergant nods

Enough work and then some, to be sure. The militia is responsible for keeping the trade routes open, and exterminating monsters that wander too close to the city. It can be pretty dangerous at times, and I must warn you that not everyone always returns.

2007-03-19, 03:52 PM
Arden nods seriously I am aware of that, and it is a risk I am willing to accept.

2007-03-19, 03:57 PM
The sergant nods and directs Arden to a small office. Inside, an old ice-fox sits sorting papers.

New recruit, eh? Fill out the forms.

The forms include a release of liability for the town, a contract promising to return issued equipment or be responsible for the cost, and an emergency contact sheet.

2007-03-19, 04:01 PM
Arden takes the forms and read them through before filling them out. He takes his time, making sure he haven't missed something.

2007-03-19, 04:05 PM
The contracts are long, wordy, and strict; but they are also neither more nor less than what they were claimed to be.

2007-03-19, 04:10 PM
Arden struggles a bit with some of the more wordy parts, not really used to read legal papers, but finally manages to get through them all and hands them back to the ice fox

2007-03-19, 04:15 PM
The clerk files the papers away and hands Arden a bead-chain with two metal tags on it to him.

You will wear these at all times. Go to the next room, please.

In the next room, a doctor is waiting

Remove your shirt, then have a seat

2007-03-19, 04:19 PM
Arden looks down at himself and decides that the doctor must not have looked up ((dragon, not wearing a shirt)). He decides not to say anything, though, and "sits down"

2007-03-19, 04:22 PM
The doctor still hasn't looked up.

Age, height, weight, species particulars?

2007-03-19, 04:27 PM
((Ok, I'm not going to hurt my brain by trying to think of proper answers to that.))

Arden answers the questions truthfully while thinking that this is a bit of an odd experience.

2007-03-19, 04:30 PM
The doctor frowns and finally looks up

Oh, I see.

He goes over to the instruments on the table and changes the current hypodermic needle with a longer one of a different metal. He proceeds to take Arden's temperature and draws some blood.

Go to the end of the hallway and collect your equipment. I'm sure the quartermaster will be overjoyed to see you.

2007-03-19, 04:33 PM
Arden nods and does so, hoping the quartermaster is a bit more cheerful, though having little hope.

2007-03-19, 04:40 PM
The quartermaster's office is fairly small, with a heavy door leading to the stores. A dark-furred vixen breaks into a huge grin at the sight of Arden.

A dragon! How adorable!

She blushes and looks at the floor

Sorry... I've always kinda liked... um...

She looks up hopefully

new recruit?

2007-03-19, 04:44 PM
Arden smiles, glad to meet someone friendly in this frigid place. He nods Yes, I'm here to try and not get myself killed. he grins.

2007-03-19, 04:52 PM
The quartermaster nods

No, we wouldn't want that to happen before I get to know you better.

She grins, then continues

Tell you what... I think you could wear a smallish set of RazorWing armor. It's better than what the patrols usually get, but I won't have anything else that could possibly fit. Do you have a color preference? We have white, red, blue, black, brown, green, and grey to match their scales.

And do you have a weapon preference?

2007-03-19, 04:55 PM
Arden smiles White sounds good, it'll also be practical when staying hidden in this place. he grins and summons a golden, shimmering mindblade And I have blades.

2007-03-19, 05:01 PM
The quartermaster smiles and nods

Very nice.

Then she takes some basic measurements, and heads off to the stores. She returns shortly after with a suit of scale-mail and a helmet. They are of light, fine dwarven steel enamelled bright, icy blue-white.

It was made to fit a smaller White Abishai, of course... but I think we can get it to fit you with reasonable modifications to the straps.

She begins to help fit the armor onto Arden.

2007-03-19, 05:04 PM
Arden smiles, and tries to get the armor on, though not really used to wearing armor that much. I'll need a little time to get used to this, I think. But it's nice.

2007-03-19, 05:13 PM
She smiles at him

I'm glad you like it. I'm sure it feels strange, but you really shouldn't trust to your own scales where arrows might be flying. It will also enhance your cold resistance.

She looks at him

Would you rather go out on patrol, or stay in the city for a while. We could probably get you into one of the RazorWing detachments... otherwise you'll end up being a scout.

The thought of him being a scout seems to have concerned her.

2007-03-19, 05:21 PM
I was hoping to get out in the wild, so scouting sounds good. But if you think staying in the city is better, then perhaps I should do that, atleast to begin with.

2007-03-19, 05:27 PM
She sighs

I'm sure you'd find scouting very exciting and interesting. The scouts just have an unpleasant habit of not living very long. In-city patrol would be drearily dull...

She looks at him

You'll need to go tell the sergant on duty which group you'd like. The captain is away right now, so the sergants take turns.

2007-03-19, 05:30 PM
He nods I see. Any particular reason for the mortality among scouts, or is it just the normal danger you'd expect to find in an environment like this?

2007-03-19, 06:58 PM
She (who is approaching the "needs a name" stage) smiles sadly

The sort of person who wants to be a scout also tends to be a little less careful than they should be.

2007-03-19, 07:02 PM
Arden tilts his head a bit That's a bit odd.

2007-03-19, 07:16 PM
She smiles

Curiosity and personal safety are often mutually exclusive

She looks into Arden's eyes

You'll love being a scout, but please come back. Now get out there! If that armor comes back rusty, I'll molt you early!

2007-03-19, 07:20 PM
Arden grins and bows his head As the lady wishes. and with that he turns around and flies out to find a sergeant

2007-03-19, 07:35 PM
The sergant of the day is currently writing up the duty rosters for the next day. He arches an eyebrow at Arden in his RazorWing armor.

Well, young man. I don't believe I've seen you before. New recruit? What position did you sign on for? Speak lively, if you please, I need to finish these rosters.

2007-03-19, 07:38 PM
Arden bows slightly I haven't signed on yet, but I would like a scouting position, if possible.

2007-03-19, 07:44 PM
The sergant looks at Arden for a moment.

Dragon in white RazorWing armor. Should have guessd.

Then he consults his roster and points to a spot.

We do have a company lacking a scout. They're handling north-coast duty tomorrow. The last scout was an ice-fairy, and was eaten by a common porpoise, of all the ridiculous things.

We mostly worry about young white dragons up there. There's the occasional behemoth or dire narwhale as well. There are several important towns north of us and we must keep the coast safe for their ships. Can't have a white dragon laired up in a hole in the rocks.

He looks at Arden

Your job is to find them, and then call in your company: not to fight them yourself. Anything on that coast that looks like a threat to a lightly-armed merchant ship needs to be disposed of. Sound good?

2007-03-19, 07:46 PM
Arden nods Very.

2007-03-19, 07:53 PM
The sergant puts Arden down for scout position, company E, for north-coast duty.

Your company will be heading out at 600 hours. Scouts generally leave as much as half an hour earlier to find the first target. Mess begins at 500. Good luck, young man.

2007-03-19, 07:56 PM
Arden bows and heads out

((And I'm lost...))

2007-03-19, 08:38 PM
(( Tomorrow, they want you to get up early, eat breakfast at 5 am, then head out at 5:30 am to begin scouting. Your company will come out at 6 am, and will expect you to have found the first target by then.

Now: I get into work between 8 and 8:30 am Central US time. Worse, I may be busy first thing in the morning, having been off sick and sitting in bed all day today. The reality is that I may not get back to this late morning my time. ))

2007-03-19, 08:42 PM
((Ah, then I figured it right after all. And I won't be online at that time, either. Atleast I highly doubt that.

We could always just play a bit with the timeline.))

2007-03-19, 08:50 PM
(( Yep. Easiest to not worry about the skew between "real time" and "WinterHearth time" for this bit. The only important thing is that Arden is up early, out all day, and back in town by early evening. He'll have a few hours to himself each evening, but he'll be expected to be out again by 5:30 am the next day...

And he's going to have a dragon-lover quartermaster hounding him. ))

2007-03-19, 08:55 PM
((Heh, sounds like fun. Probably a good thing that Arden is the most "lawful" of the dragons, even though he's far from lawful :)))

2007-03-19, 08:59 PM
(( Yep. And eventually, Captain Karl will be back. So you have about a week to get Arden established with the WinterHearth militia. [oooh... politics...] ))

2007-03-21, 08:58 AM
Arden, already being up early to practice a bit, heads out early to scout.

2007-03-21, 09:01 AM
Arden's company heads out at 6 am sharp. There are four warriors, two archers, a wizard and a cleric. They march north to a pre-arranged meeting point that we'll assume the sergant told Arden about earlier.

2007-03-21, 09:05 AM
And as the "lawful" dragon he is, Arden is there to meet them when they arrive, anxious to see what this day will bring.

2007-03-21, 09:22 AM
The group reaches Aredn

A dragon?
At least he won't get 'et by a dolphin

The sergant comes up

Have you found anything, Arden?

2007-03-21, 09:28 AM
((My mind doesn't seem to work as it should, lately. He was supposed to have found something, right?))

2007-03-21, 09:33 AM
(( Well.... he was supposed to try. It's really up to you whether he did or not... and what he found if he did: You've got the Frostburn book too, after all :smallbiggrin: ))

2007-03-21, 09:48 AM
((You want me to be creative? Damn...))

Arden nods and points slightly north-east I spotted a huge animal, horse-like, with six legs and white fur. It looked slightly wounded and enraged, obviously a possible danger. ((A Tlalusk))

2007-03-22, 09:25 AM
The sergant smiles at Arden

Good work, lad.

The sergant then glares at their player for not looking up that monster last night when he had a chance, then orders the company to move out.

Let's move out! No Dragon this morning, but don't get sloppy!

2007-03-22, 09:31 AM
Arden follows, keeping a wary eye out for any danger, knowing that the beast could have moved quite a distance since he saw it last.

2007-03-22, 09:37 AM
The archers sweep out to the sides to provide cover while the four warriors form up in a square. The wizard and cleric hang back with the sergant, and the whole group moves cautiously but confidently forward.

(( I think I'll hijack this plotlet ))

The group comes out onto an ice-field, and finds the creature: brutally slashed to death.

Not good, boys. Look sharp! Something worse is out here.

Only a moment later, he finds out just how much worse as four WinterHaunts leap out of the snow and attack.

2007-03-22, 09:42 AM
((Aww... I never get to have any fun :)))

Arden takes to the air to hopefully get out of reach of the winterhaunts as well as get room for movement. He summons his mindblades and tries to determine where best to strike

2007-03-22, 09:48 AM
The evil humans swing their oversized scythes with a speed and skill that is completely incongruous with the look of the weapons.

They also have a rather long reach: one takes a swipe at Arden.

Two others keep the warriors busy, while the fourth summons an Entombed.

The archers fire at the haunt that swiped at Arden, but his armor turns their shots due to the extreme angle.

The wizard and cleric both begin spells, and the sergant draws his sword which bursts into flame.

Press them! Don't let them get their evil spells off!

2007-03-22, 09:56 AM
Arden winces as the surprisingly far reaching scythe cuts him along the side. He flies even higher and throws his mindblade at the Entombed (+3d8 positive energy)

2007-03-22, 10:05 AM
The giant apparation roars as the mindblade hits it, but is hopelessly unable to reach Arden. Instead, it lumbers toward toward the archer on the left.

The haunts rotate out and the second begins his summoning while three attack. The four warriors are hard pressed, and Arden is the target of another opportunistic swipe.

The archers begin firing fire burst arrows, and the entombed roars again as two of them slam into it.

The entombed roars a third time as a fireball engulphs it, then the entire group feels the gentle warmpth (or searing pain) of the cleric's bless.

2007-03-22, 10:09 AM
Arden rolls out of the way of the swipe and breathes a cone of electricity at the winterhaunt currently summoning something.

2007-03-22, 10:18 AM
The haunt jolts and shudders at the electricity, his summoning attempt ruined. He spits out a quick but potent Curse which sinks icy talons into the group from WinterHearth.

The entombed attempts to grab the archer, but is rewarded by evasion and a point-blank shot to the head, followed closely by another fire aroow from the other archer.

The haunt that already summoned successfully breaks off from the warriors and focuses on Arden. He fires a Cone of Cold (Su) and takes a swing. (( I think that's right. A short move, a standard, and a swift... ))

The other two find themselves fighting two to one and start to take damage. The warriors, however, are badly cut and chilled. Or were because...

The cleric casts Cure Serious Wounds, Mass and undoes most of the trouble.

The sergant charges the entombed and slashes it with his flametongue longsword

The wizard does a fantastic leap into the air and scortches the Haunts fighting the warriors with Burning Hands.

2007-03-22, 10:27 AM
Arden, being half celestial and thus having resistance to cold (plus the resistance from the armor), takes only partial damage from the spell. He frowns and uses Bladewind to throw his mindblade at everyone within reach

2007-03-22, 10:45 AM
The haunts and the entombed are hit by the blades. The one in back casts a Cure Critical Wounds, Mass and the four Haunts are all restored to health.

Two more arrows, and the entombed crumbles into frozen lumps.

The haunt attacking Arden casts Unholy Smite and swings visciously twice

The two fighting the warrors continue their stalemate

The cleric Blesses the group again.

The sergant turns and slashes at the haunt attacking Arden.

The wizard shares a set of magic missiles out among the haunts, giving two to the spellcasting haunt.

2007-03-22, 10:51 AM
Arden frowns at the unholy smite and rolls out of the way of the swings, but one hits and leaves a bleeding gash. Arden winces and casts a Holy Smite

2007-03-22, 11:02 AM
The haunt fighting Arden is missiled, slashed, and smote. He snarls and whips around a viscious backhand, hacking visciously into the sergant's body.

The two dueling the warriors each take a fire-burst arrow and a missile. One also takes a longsword in the eye and crumples. The other gives up on defense and full-attacks the warrior in front of him, who goes down.

The spellcasting haunt takes two missiles with a snarl, and whips an oddly-carved bone from a chain on his neck, snapping both bone and chain. A spell is instantly cast, and the cleric's eyes go wide as he recognizes Summon Planar Ally DEMON! he shouts, and prepares a spell.

The wizard finds himself casting the wrong spell, and snarls as he releases a futile acid arrow at the spellcasting haunt.

The sergant gasps at the dreadful wound, but retains enough composure to sever the winterhaunt's head from its shoulders.

2007-03-22, 11:06 AM
Arden casts CSW on himself before throwing his mindblade at the spellcasting haunt.

2007-03-22, 11:09 AM
The spellcasting haunt gets hit by the acid arrow and the blade, but the spell finishes anyway. He immediately begins another.

A frozen tear appears in the fabric of reality, and a demon of Iborighu steps out. The demon looks around quickly and assess the situation.

The other fighting haunt takes two arrows, and goes down.

The cleric casts Heal, Mass. The sergant and the downed warrior struggle to their feet to face the demon.

The three standing warriors regroup and prepare to face the dreadful ice-demon.

2007-03-22, 11:11 AM
Arden breathes another cone of electricity at the spellcasting haunt, while trying to stay as far from the demon as possible ((which I suppose is not far))

2007-03-22, 11:18 AM
The spellcasting haunt finally goes down.

The demon raises his arms and summons a dreadful magical blizzard. Total white-out conditions spring up as supernatural cold straight from the plane of ice freezes all moisture in the air into needle-like shards and a hurricane wind ships ice, snow, and even small rocks into a swirling mass of pain. Sheet-lightning rips randomly through the area, and the demon stalks his prey.

The cleric and the others huddle under a hastily-cast prismatic sphere in a zone of comfort.

(( This will be interesting: Arden and the demon have similar powers and resistances. ))

2007-03-22, 11:24 AM
Arden winces at the extreme cold, but the lightning doesn't seem to bother him at all. The storm doesn't seem to have much effect either, except for some flying rocks and the like that hit him.

Arden frowns as he throws his two mindblades at the demon, hoping to hit despite the difficult conditions (still +3d8 positive)

2007-03-22, 11:29 AM
The demon snarls as one blade hits true. It turns and manifests and Energy Ray (cold) at Arden, spending 10 extra points.

The blizzard still howls.

2007-03-22, 11:33 AM
Arden ignores the pain and casts Dispel Evil (http://www.d20srd.org/srd/spells/dispelEvil.htm), flying towards the demon to try and touch and banish it.

2007-03-22, 11:40 AM
(( What does that do? The demon is really here now, so it will take a Banishment or smiliar to send it away. Dismissal and such won't work. ))

2007-03-22, 11:42 AM
Second, on making a successful melee touch attack against an evil creature from another plane, you can choose to drive that creature back to its home plane.

((As I read that, it works like a banishment. Am I wrong here?))

2007-03-22, 11:47 AM
(( Looks good to me ))

Arden's touch of "demon go home" is successful. With the departure of the fiend, the storm fades as well. After a time, the prismatic sphere fades revealing the company unharmed.

The sergant looks troubled

It's a bad job if WinterHaunts are operating this close to the city. We have to get back and report.

The others nod and the group marches back to town, double-time. The sergant looks at Arden

If we're ambushed again, you go on ahead to WinterHearth. They have to know of this!


Away in WinterHearth, Karl and Yoshiro have returned to their duties.

2007-03-22, 11:51 AM
Arden nods at the sergeant and follows, ignoring his wounds As you wish.

2007-03-22, 12:06 PM
The cleric notices that Arden is still injured and casts a Cure Serious Wounds for him.

Despite worries of ambush, the group returns to WinterHearth without incident, where Karl is waiting. The sergant makes his report, and a flurry of activity ensues. Amidst that, Karl comes over to see the company

Good work, men. You are all on leave for the rest of the day: you've done enough for now.

As the company disperses, he comes over to Arden

Good work out there, Arden. And thanks.

Across the city, the RazorWings take to the air, and the patrols along the walls and the trade routes are heavily increased. All hunting groups are recalled to bolster the forces.

2007-03-22, 12:10 PM
Arden smiles and bows slightly Thanks, glad to help out. That could easily have gone a lot worse.

2007-03-22, 12:52 PM
Karl nods

We don't let it be generally known, but we face the WinterHaunts far more often then we'd like. There's still something here that they want, and they haven't given up on it yet.

Karl looks out of the window, toward the ruined castle on the hill

I bet it's in there, whatever it is. People who go in, don't come out again.

2007-03-22, 01:22 PM
Arden follows his gaze and looks thoughtful I see. I'm not sure I would be that useful in there, I'm better out in the open, I think. But I'll help as best I can if needed.

2007-03-22, 01:27 PM
Karl's eyes go wide

Goodness, I wasn't suggesting...

Karl grins and shakes his head

Go get some rest: you only get one day off.

Karl looks out at the ruins again

No... we'll need help from back home for that one.

2007-03-22, 01:30 PM
Arden smiles That's probably for the best. Take care. he bows and goes to find a quiet place to relax a bit.

2007-03-22, 04:18 PM
Exachix enters the Town (of Winterhearth) via the portal from Town and looks around.

2007-03-22, 04:22 PM
Arden sits in the temple, where it's quiet, and meditates. He doesn't notice Exachix.

2007-03-22, 04:25 PM
Exachix begins the wander around, trying to find someone who will know where Arden is.

2007-03-22, 04:33 PM
Asking around will probably give two possible places to look, the barracks and the temple.

((I thought the portal opened in the temple, though, so he probably would have spotted Arden there))

2007-03-22, 04:35 PM
((I didn't read anywhere that it did. But I may have missed it))

Exachix nodds and goes tot he temple anyway, even if he's just come from there and failed more spot checks than a paranoid theif. He looks around and sees Arden, and sighs.

2007-03-22, 04:37 PM
(( It was in the thread when the main movement of people happened: Fenric said that the portal would be relocated from the forge to the Temple when everyone had moved. I should update the first post, though... ))

2007-03-22, 04:39 PM
((Ah, ok))

Arden sits in a quiet corner in the temple, meditating.

2007-03-22, 04:40 PM
Exachix sees Arden, and sighs, before taking a few steps towards him, not wanting to disturb him.

2007-03-22, 04:41 PM
Arden, sensing someone approach, looks up and blinks. Seeing Exachix he smiles Oh, hi Exachix.

2007-03-22, 04:42 PM
Exachix gives a solem bow and looks at the floor, sadly.

"I hate to do that, but I regret to inform you that Ruby killed herself today. I thought you should know."

2007-03-22, 04:46 PM
Arden sighs and looks down Ruby is dead? he sighs and gets up slowly Mom must be devastated. I need to see them.

2007-03-22, 04:49 PM
Exachix nodds, and stays silent.

2007-03-22, 04:53 PM
Arden looks down sadly, for a time not really able to make himself do anything, so he just stands there, glancing at the floor. After a few minuts he takes a deep breath and wipes a few tears away Thank for telling me, Exachix. I... need to go tell them over at the barracks... I suppose. he sighs again and slowly leaves, making his way to the barracks

2007-03-22, 04:54 PM
Exachix sighs and goes back to town.

2007-03-22, 04:56 PM
Arden enters the barracks and looks around

2007-03-22, 05:41 PM
Karl smiles at Arden

Aren't you supposed to be on leave?

2007-03-22, 05:43 PM
Arden sighs I was, I just came to let you know that I need to return home... Ruby just killed herself.

2007-03-22, 05:46 PM
Karl's face falls.

Oh shock... I'm so sorry, Arden. Yes, get out of here. We're not going to be scouting anything for a few days, anyway. Tell Dad about the WinterHaunts, will you?

2007-03-22, 05:48 PM
Arden nods I will. And thank you.

With that he turns and leaves, making his way back to the temple and through the portal

2007-03-25, 08:43 AM
After a few days, the city stands down from high alert, and the WinterHearth patrols are returned to normal duty.

Zak calls a conference to determine what to do about the threat. Researchers are set the task of sifting through the mountain of records left by the former administration to find any reason that Iborighu would be so interested in the city.

2007-03-28, 02:13 PM
Hasnia comes from the portal to Inari's at the town and looks around, before addressing someone for the way to the Barracks, as she gets the directions she walks towards it and knocks on the door.

2007-03-28, 02:18 PM
A soldier comes to the door


2007-03-28, 02:22 PM
I'd like to talk with Karl, if possible.

The clothing Hasnia wears doesn't seem to be made for this type of environment.

2007-03-28, 02:29 PM
The soldier motions to her

You must have come here from Town, dressed like that. Come along.

He leads her to a small, cramped office where Karl is pouring over reports from the scouts: looking for any pattern that might indicate WinterHaunt activity.

2007-03-28, 02:49 PM
Hasnia smiles at Karl

How are you doing, Karl?

Then Hasnia falls into dead time as Gezina has to do some stuff for astrology.

2007-03-28, 02:56 PM
Karl smiles without looking up at first

Well, hello, Hasnia! Good to hear you're doing

Then he looks up

well...? Um... weren't you more like ten years old?

2007-03-29, 11:43 AM
Never heard of magic?

Hasnia says as she comes back out of dead time.

2007-03-30, 08:11 PM
Karl chuckles

Fair enough: I'm only seven months old myself, in real terms.

Karl smiles at her

What brings you to WinterHearth.

2007-03-31, 04:16 AM
Well, I was bored and thought I'd visit you, Inuk told me you were here.

2007-03-31, 08:33 AM
Karl smiles

I see. And what do you think of our frosty little town?

2007-03-31, 08:52 AM

Hasnia smiles as she says this.

2007-03-31, 07:57 PM
Sometime during the night the sky is lit up by a great flare of light somewhere far in the distance. It disappears without a trace or sign of it's nature a second later.

2007-04-01, 09:08 AM
Karl chuckles

That it is. We're nearly three thousand miles north of the Town here. Would you like to see the place?

A messenger brings in the report about the flare, and Karl nods

Get someone to scry on it, see where it is. If it's within our jurisdiction, get a scouting party on it.

2007-04-01, 10:16 AM
That would be wonderful.

Hasnia summons a fur coat and puts it on.

This should be a bit more fit for the temperature here.

2007-04-01, 10:46 AM
Karl nods and stands up, coming out from behind the desk. His dark grey chainmail is highly polished, and the symbol of Kyrian on the front fairly glows in contrast. His cloak is of fine black cloth, and trimmed with dark fur. His armored boots are also black and polished to a mirror shine. There is a dagger and a ceremonial sword on his belt.

He offers Hasnia his arm as he gives some instructions to the sergant on duty. Then motions to the door

Shall we go?

2007-04-01, 11:16 AM
Hasnia takes the arm gracefully.

Fine by me

2007-04-01, 11:21 AM
Karl leads her out from the barracks.

Just up the street on the right is the Temple, where you came first... if you came through the portal. At the end of the road there, that tower is one of the RazorWing eyries.

Karl turns the other way

Across the rift is the other militia facility, and at the end of the road there next to the rift is the big facility where Dad's brother Ran watches over shipping: both aerial and sea-borne.

Karl turns back the first way

There's more to see this way, though.

He starts to lead her up the street.

2007-04-01, 11:24 AM
Hasnia looks around and listens, though she doesn't say a word.

2007-04-01, 11:37 AM
The street turns north and the pair arrives at the bridge over the rift. Karl stops in the middle and points slightly north of east, where a palace carved from ice perches on the head of the chasm.

There's the governor's palce. It used to be a temple of some demon lord or other. The shadow-foxes didn't mind the leftover aura after we cleaned the worst of it out, and took it over.

Then he turns the other way, looking down the rift. A huge tower creeps all the way down to the waterline, and reaches a good distance into the sky.

Here you can see how the fijord comes up. The harbormaster acts as both seaport and skyport, giving us a trade hub not matched for hundreds of miles. Combine that with the caravan routes, and we get to touch almost three quarters of the trade in this part of the northlands.

2007-04-01, 11:56 AM
The scrying reveals the flare to have occured somewhere far from WinterHearth, in an otherwise empty field of ice far from anything of note. Nothing unusual to see now.

Sometime in the morning a small figure appears in the distance, although it is almost completely invisible against the snow. It moves slowly, stopping once in a while. As it gets within proper sight of those on guard, it turns out to be a white fox, dragging itself through the thick snow. It appears exhausted and barely able to continue.

Not far from the gate it collapses in the snow and remains still.

2007-04-01, 11:58 AM
The guards summon a patrol, who go out to the fox. Seeing it is a fox, the patrol's cleric casts Cure Moderate Wounds, Neutralize Poison, and Cure Disease, then they carefully pick it up and carry it off to the temple.

(( And now I really am gone. Bye ))

2007-04-01, 12:05 PM
The fox, which on closer inspection appears to have 5 tails, doesn't react as it is picked up and carried to the temple. It appears alive and unwounded, but unresponsive.

The fox has a small pouch in a string around it's neck. On the pouch is written the word "Tenshin" in golden letters. It has a slightly unsettling aura, though whether it's the pouch or what's in it is hard to tell.

2007-04-01, 01:36 PM
Hasnia smiles as she listens to the story.


2007-04-01, 06:27 PM

The priests look at the name badge.

Tenshin? Is that his name?
And what could harass a 5-tail so badly?
We must find out more when he awakens...


Karl smiles and leads Hasina north into the craftsmen's and merchant's quarter.

2007-04-01, 06:40 PM
After a while a soft blue-tinged glow surrounds the fox. It's eyes open slightly, but it remains still for now. It would also appear to be a 'she', rather than a 'he', despite the apparent name.

2007-04-02, 11:40 AM
Hasnia smiles at Karl as they walk through the town.

2007-04-02, 11:46 AM
Karl continues to point out items of interest: the Town Hall, the various RazorWing barracks, the shops and forges of the craftsmen's quarter. Finally he reaches the northeast gate.

Well, that's pretty much it, really. The only place we didn't go through was the main residential area; but there's not much to see there. This gate leads out to the main road to the glacier, where dwarves mine the blue ice which is our main product and the real reason this city was even here. What would you like to do next?

Karl turns to Hasnia with a smile as he asks that last question.


The priests are a bit taken aback by the blue glow and the gender discrepancy. They continue to keep a close eye on the strange 5-tail.

2007-04-02, 12:00 PM
I don't really know, what's a nice thing to do here?

Hasnia smiles at Karl.

2007-04-02, 12:39 PM
The fox looks up and bows it's head at the priests. Thank you. It then sits up and looks around slowly

2007-04-02, 12:46 PM
Karl tilts his head and shrugs

There's not a whole lot, really. You can tour the ice-mine, but it's really not very interesting. There's a little school for smith-craft...

Karl shakes his head

We don't have anywhere interesting like Trog's. A couple of nasty dives down by the harbor, and a little tavern by the north barracks make up just about everything. I think most folks end up going to Trog's or the Sleeping Elf back in Town, really. I heard there's a seafood restaurant in the residential quarters, but I've never been there.

Karl shrugs again


The currently on-duty priest returns the bow.

What brings you to WinterHearth, my lady Kitsune? It is rare enough to see your people, rarer still for one of your stature to be so far north.
That's about it, really.

2007-04-02, 12:50 PM
Ah, well we could try to eat something.

Hasnia claps and a bunch of chicken meat and rice appears, completely ready for eating and seemingly very warm.

Are you hungry as well?

2007-04-02, 12:56 PM
Tenshin turns back to face the priest It is merely another step in a long path that I must follow. For now I am on my way to... the Town? she says, as if a bit unsure if that's really the right name. Beyond that the future is unknown.

2007-04-02, 12:58 PM
Karl chuckles

Chicken and Rice! Beats Dad's clerics: they can only make fish and rice. Sure, I'll try some.


The priest nods

You are closer than you might think, then. The alcove over there holds a portal to the temple in Town. You will meet others of your kind there, as well.

2007-04-02, 01:01 PM
Hasnia smiles As she starts to eat, like someone who hasn't eaten in years. Good thing she made a terrible lot of food.

2007-04-02, 01:03 PM
Tenshin smiles and bows her head as she stands up, still looking a bit weak Thank you. I could use some rest.

2007-04-02, 01:09 PM
Karl eats a little more sedately than Hasnia, but he still gobbles up the chicken at a decent rate.

It's very good. Thatnk you!


The priest smiles

You might want to head there, then. We really don't have much in the way of accommodations here, but they are set up to house quite a few people. Considerably more than stay there anymore, really.

2007-04-02, 01:11 PM
No need to thank me, I just expended a teeny tiny bit of power, nothing much.

When the food is finished Hasnia claps again and a glass of a mysterious fluid appears in front of both of them.

2007-04-02, 01:14 PM
I shall not waste your time further, then. Thank you once more. she says before turning and walking towards the portal.

2007-04-02, 01:17 PM
Karl picks up the glass and sniffs delicately at the liquid

What is it, if you don't mind my asking?

2007-04-02, 01:19 PM
The liquid smells sweetly.

It's nectar, the drink of the greek gods.

2007-04-02, 01:24 PM
Karl arches an eyebrow and sips the fragrant beverage.


2007-04-02, 01:26 PM
Hasnia drinks it like it's wine.

It's nice, isn't it?

2007-04-02, 01:32 PM
Karl nods

Very nice.

Karl drinks the nectar with relish. (( There's a figure of speech that doesn't really work if you think about it too much ))

2007-04-02, 01:43 PM
Hasnia smiles at Karl.

((what does drinking with relish mean?))

2007-04-02, 01:50 PM
(( Enthusiastically ))

Karl smiles back, then looks up as a RazorWing partol flies overhead. At this, he shakes his head.

Two more attacks this week, but neither of consequence. What are they up to?

Karl sighs, then looks back to Hasnia

Sorry: work never really leaves me alone these days.

2007-04-02, 01:52 PM
I could help, wouldn't mind flexing my power a bit.

Hasnia smiles, as the ice around her seems to melt.

2007-04-02, 01:58 PM
Karl scowls in frustration

If we knew what to do, I'd be glad of the help. We can never find more than four or so of them at a time, as far out into the ice as we look. They wander around and eventually attack us, but there's no sense to any of it. Their miserable frosty god won't let them be captured, and their minds are all primitive rage if you try to read them during combat.

Karl shakes his head

As it is, they are no real threat. But they destroyed this city once, so we don't dare take them lightly. Still... it is almost like something seems to be calling them

He tilts his head and looks at Hasnia

Could you see if anything would be particularly enticing to the clerics of an evil ice god? Dad's clerics can't find anything.

2007-04-02, 02:01 PM
Hasnia's hands start to burn.

How about divine fire fueled by the rage of an age old prisoner?

2007-04-02, 02:03 PM
(( Now have you read Frostburn, or is it a coincidence that you said that?... because that actually is the answer. ))

Karl tilts his head in confusion

I'm not sure what you mean, Hasnia...

2007-04-02, 02:07 PM
((I've glanced through frostburn, only the game mechanics chapter though. Pure coincidence))

Fire opposes Ice, the power I wield is that of divine fire and it comes of an age old prisoner which is quite a bit angry.

Hasnia's hands are flaming with hellfire now.

2007-04-02, 02:15 PM
Karl starts to go "ah", when a low rumble as of distant subterranean thunder rolls from the ruined castle on the bluffs above the city. Karl looks away from Hasnia and over there with some surprise.

So it really is that old place?

(( Where the cult of an evil god opposed to Iborighu feed sacrifices into a firey column to gain him enough power to free himself from the prison that Asmodeus locked him into. Miserable great long name beginning with "l" that I don't remember... maybe Ilias could look it up if he's still around. Otherwise it will have to wait until after I get back home. ))

2007-04-02, 02:18 PM
What old place?

Hasnia's firey hands calm down again.

2007-04-02, 02:21 PM
Karl points southeast, where the ruined remains of a castle adorn the top of an icy hill.

There. Apparently the WinterHaunts managed to wreck it, but something nasty is still in there. It's decidedly haunted, and people who go in don't come back out again. I was telling Arden about it earlier.

2007-04-02, 02:23 PM
((Where should I look for that name?))

2007-04-02, 02:25 PM
Well, let's look in there. I'm not afraid of danger.

Hasnia brandishes her shadow long and short sword combo.

Just for safety.

2007-04-03, 09:02 AM
(( Hmm... wasn't actually ready to start just yet: haven't finished my planning. And I've got some availability trouble coming up. Hasnia can go have a look, but it can't be the "real thing" yet. ))

Karl looks surprised, then grins

Maybe it is time we found out what's going on in there.

Karl stands up and stretches

2007-04-03, 09:59 AM
((Posting will be slow, working on an important assignment for sociology))

Hasnia draws a cloak of fire around herself and creates wings of shadow.

Let's go.

2007-04-03, 10:01 AM
Karl manifests an Energy Adaptation and summons his soulblades, then he leads the way out the gate and along a narrow path that winds up into the frozen hills toward the ruined castle.

2007-04-03, 10:14 AM
Hasnia flies behind him, slowly transforming into a mix of werefox and phoenix.

2007-04-03, 10:24 AM
As the pair near the castle, the sense of brooding evil within can be clearly felt. Karl looks around somewhat nervously.

No wonder we left this place alone...

The doorless entryway is anything but welcoming, with the frozen corpses of WinterHaunts lying around, untouched by scavengers. There is a distinct lack of snow, however, implying that something moves through the entryway regularly.

2007-04-03, 10:31 AM
Hasnia smiles at the castle.

To adventure!

2007-04-03, 10:39 AM
Karl walks in through the gate and into the fairly gruesome scene of the courtyard. The battle here was fierce, and the bodies of attacker and defender alike remain where they fell. The shelter of the broken walls is enough to allow only the occasional snowdrift to cover anything up. The yard today is as still and silent as a tomb: nothing living can be seen, heard, or sensed.

As the pair pick their way across the open space, the sense of evil goes from brooding to angry. Waves of insane rage and hostility beat against Karl and Hasnia in the silent frozen air.

2007-04-03, 10:44 AM
Doesn't feel like the place wants us here, now does it?

Hasnia fuels her flames even more, now looking like a small flaming dragonoid.

2007-04-03, 10:48 AM
Karl chuckles nervously

No, that's as loud a "go away!" as you could want.

Karl continues to pick his way across the yard: slippery with ice and littered with bodies and rubble as it is. As he works his way around a particularly large heap of rubble he suddenly disappears with a yelp. Hasnia can see where a slab of stone has tipped up and let him fall. It is not clear whether it was a trap or just a weakening of the structure due to the battle.

2007-04-03, 10:50 AM
Hasnia goes to the place Karl fell and looks down.

What happened?

2007-04-03, 10:54 AM
Karl's voice comes from reasonably far below

Stupid thing tipped up and dropped me down here. I landed in a pile of cloth of some sort, kinda weird. It's too dark to see what it is.

2007-04-03, 10:56 AM
Hasnia sends a flash of fire to lighten it up.

Can you see now?

2007-04-03, 11:00 AM
Karl's voice once again echoes up, and Hasnia can see the young paladin standing in what was likely a store-room. The slab was merely part of the ceiling.

It's... clothes? Random shirts, trousers, boots, cloaks...

He picks up a kimono with a startled and frightened expression

One of the temple uniforms? This is not good.

2007-04-03, 11:03 AM
Let me help you out of there.

Hasnia sens a line down, it doesn't seem to be of any common material.

2007-04-03, 11:05 AM
Karl takes a tight hold of the line, bracing it behind his legs.


2007-04-03, 11:15 AM
The line pulls Karl up, unless something is preventing that. It seems to be slightly sticky.

2007-04-03, 11:16 AM
Nothing prevets it: Karl gets pulled right up.

Thanks, Hasnia. Something's still going on here, and I don't like the look of it.

2007-04-03, 11:21 AM
'T was easy as hell, or it would be if hell was easy.

Hasnia smiles as she looks around for any other possible dangers.

2007-04-03, 11:25 AM
Hasnia notes a great many possible dangers:

There are some freakin' huge, pointy iceickles dangling from the building that could fall.

The courtyard is paved in many areas, and any bit might also be unstable.

There are a lot of bodies around, giving the possibility of a number of powerful and unpleasant undead to jump up at any time.

Who knows what that big snowdrift over there might be hiding?

And something is now even more angry at the pair, especially Hasnia. Trickseter-god feels a bit of an aura from the Abyss in the mess.

Karl looks around, then picks his way across the courtyard even more slowly, giving any stone a good testing before trusting his weight to it again.

This will slow things down...

2007-04-03, 11:32 AM
It's very unsafe here, we should leave now and come back with more. I've spotted many potential dangers and I'm sure there are more I haven't spotted.

Hasnia looks like she doesn't really want to act like this.

2007-04-03, 11:02 PM
Karl sighs in relief at the suggestion.

I think that's a great idea. This is more serious than we can deal with by ourselves... I need to make a report to the governor, and Dad should probably know, too.

2007-04-04, 12:19 PM
Let's go then

Hasnia looks towards the exit, waiting for Karl to move first.

2007-04-04, 12:27 PM
Karl carefully makes his way back out of the castle

2007-04-04, 12:30 PM
Hasnia follows, the hint of a smile playing at her lips.

2007-04-04, 12:41 PM
Once outside the walls, the feeling of hostility subsides considerably. Karl shakes his head

Whoever it is, they don't want us there. This needs to be dealt with.

2007-04-04, 12:44 PM
I agree with you there, let's return to the barracks for now though.

Hasnia transforms back to her usual shape, wearing clothing fit for an arctic winter.

2007-04-04, 12:46 PM
Karl smiles and offers Hasnia his arm again


2007-04-04, 12:48 PM
Hasnia takes the arm, smiling at Karl.

The sooner we're gone here the better.

2007-04-04, 12:50 PM
Karl nods, then walks briskly back down the path away from the castle and toward the northeast WinterHearth gate.

2007-04-04, 12:54 PM
Hasnia whistles a bit on the way, a common song about the doom of law in a chaotic society.

2007-04-04, 12:59 PM
Karl smiles as they walk along accompanied by Hasnia's whistling. He nods to the gate guards, who salute him as the pair walks back into town.

2007-04-04, 01:01 PM
So, who do we alert about that place now?

Hasnia asks Karl.

2007-04-04, 01:05 PM
Karl smiles, and turns back east when they reach the rift, before crossing it.

First of all, my uncle Zak, the governor.

Karl leads Hasnia down a wide street toward an ornate, obviously governmental building. She would probably guess it to be the WinterHeart Town Hall, and she would be right. This time, Karl stops at the door to speak with the guard.

Hello. Is the governor in? I have a matter of some urgency to discuss with him.

The soldier nods

Yes, captain: he is in his office.

Karl bows politely and heads inside.

2007-04-04, 01:15 PM
Hasnia bows towards the soldier as well and enters the town hall as well.

2007-04-04, 01:25 PM
Karl leads Hasnia into the governor's office.

Zakziril NorZilliar is tall for a werefox, standing nearly six inches taller than Fenric. He is selnder of build, and his fur is dark red-brown with black tips, and his eyes are inky black. An aura of chaos and shadows surrounds him.

Hey, uncle Zak! Something weird is going on at the castle ruins.

Zak looks up at the pair, and arches an eyebrow at Hasnia.

I see that the cultists did not manage to capture you, which is fortunate. I would not like to explain to my brother that his son was lost on such a fool's errand. What drove you to visit that accursed place?

Karl stammers, surprised and flummoxed all at once.

You make many assumptions, young Karl, as you are always wont to do. The issue of that castle is not one easily solved, as the WinterHaunts learned to their cost.

2007-04-04, 01:28 PM
Hasnia can't help but chuckle.

Allow me to introduce myself: Hasnia, the flame of Chaos.

2007-04-04, 01:30 PM
Arden flies through the portal from the temple and makes his way back to the barracks.

2007-04-04, 01:32 PM
Zak rises and bows politely

A pleasure to make your acquaintance. I am Zakziril Enraldi NorZilliar, spellweaver and governor of this city. I take it this little expedition was your idea?

2007-04-04, 01:34 PM
I was merely trying to help, your highness. I did not realize the dangers involved, I've always been a bit to rash. For my entire lifespan. Which is partially very shirt and partially longer than this plane exists.