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  1. - Top - End - #1
    Dwarf in the Playground
     
    oloknotwise's Avatar

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    Default Expedition to Castle Ravenloft

    Expedition to Castle Ravenloft

    Chapter 1

    With the dying of daylight, a fog creep across the land, clutching everything in its clammy grasp. Inside the Weary Horse Inn, though, the fire is warm enough, and if the few patrons are sullen and stare at you a little boldly, at least the food and drinks are good.
    For an inn's common room, it's quiet. It holds no more than a handful of customers. They keep their voices low, and even the clink of their mugs seems subdued as the fog gathers outside. When the door swings open, every head turns to see who has arrived.
    This new arrival body loudly stamps the mud off his boots in the doorway, then strides confidently over, throwing a letter down on the table in front of you.
    "The village of Barovia is in need of heroes," he says in a thick accent, "You'll do as well as any." Without another word, he turns to leave.

    Spoiler
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    We are just jumping right into the plot. So, as a partying group that has been together fr a few months, you will each know each other.
    You have found yourselves at the Weary Horse Inn after another adventure, and in the common room, while drinking and eating, this mysterious figure hands you the letter.

    Now go!
    Last edited by oloknotwise; 2007-10-30 at 11:00 PM.
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  2. - Top - End - #2
    Bugbear in the Playground
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    Default Re: Expedition to Castle Ravenloft

    Delorn

    Caught off guard by the sudden entrance and exit, Delorn pauses with his mug poised at his lips. He glances at his fellows and sets the drink down before picking up the letter handed to them. The human is dressed simply, though a glimmer reveals the shiny chain underneath his clothing. At his sides hang a rapier and a shortsword, both well-kept. However, all of these pale in comparison to the amount of small gadgets hanging off his person. A bulging sack hangs off the back of his chair, a few small gizmos near spilling out.

    "... I think he wanted to hire us for something," he notes, inspecting the letter's contents. Holding the letter to the light, Delorn reveals his black hair and common gray eyes.

  3. - Top - End - #3
    Bugbear in the Playground
     
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    Default Re: Expedition to Castle Ravenloft

    Verily Deathspurn

    Verily springs up. Laying a hand on the man's shoulder, he stops him from leaving prematurely. The hunter is tall and broad, but his face seems set in a perpetually morose expression. Brown hairs hangs loosely in front of red eyes. He clears his throat.

    "Don't be so quick to leave. Who are you, and what is Barovia?"

  4. - Top - End - #4
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    The Ever Smiling

    One man, oddly enough, is gently corkscrewing in the air, as if to imitate the burning roast in the nearby cooking pit. A cape made of what seems to be flickering, opaque shadows flutter behind and around him like a cloak. He is skeletally thin yet wiry, as though an otherwordly force gripped his sinews in place. A dark grey mask with a twisted grin painted on the mouth obscures the whole face, framed by unruly dark hair.

    "Strangeness from strangeness finds strangeness in the unstrange, yes?" cackles a voice from beneath the mask, as though the man was chuckling. "Will you unleash the words, Trapsman?" he asks, speaking towards Delorn.

    The Ever Smiling continues to slowly spin overhead.
    Last edited by 13_CBS; 2007-10-30 at 11:35 PM.

  5. - Top - End - #5
    Barbarian in the Playground
     
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    Aidan

    Used to his companion's actions and not wanting to draw attention to it he turns toward the stopped guard. "Stay good sir and have a drink, you obviously need it." He smiles, trying to show the guard that his comrade means no harm.
    Thank you to starwoof for the awesome Astrid avatar.


  6. - Top - End - #6
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    Default Re: Expedition to Castle Ravenloft

    "Barovia lies to the west, a full days ride. It is best that you leave at first light." With that said, the mysterious man turns back around, ignoring the other questions and begins to make his way out of the inn.
    Currently DMing:
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  7. - Top - End - #7
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    Default Re: Expedition to Castle Ravenloft

    The Letter

    Barovia. The worms creep beneath ours floors and our streets, they feast on the flesh of our dead. High in the castle, the once lord no longer, the new lord is not yet, without form, void. All is void and vanity.
    Ireena, Ireena, Ireena! Long have I kept you at my side, long will I keep you close to my heart! Save my Ireena!
    I am the Burgonmaster. The Master! Kolyan am I! Soon the worms will feast on me.
    Come! Do not tarry!


    Spoiler
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    Delorn: this is the letter that you read. You may choose to read it out loud or not.
    Last edited by oloknotwise; 2007-10-31 at 12:11 AM.
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  8. - Top - End - #8
    Bugbear in the Playground
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    Delorn

    "Unleashing the letter is not such a deal. Although, the writer seems to have been a bit... unhinged," Delorn comments, passing the letter around to his companions.

    After the group has looked it over, he asks, "So, this sounds interesting to me. What say the rest of you?"

  9. - Top - End - #9
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    The warlock abruptly stops spinning and faces his party.

    "A lord-not-lord of worms, is he? Pining for the flesh?" he asks, cocking his head slightly to the right.

    "Heh heh heh...need you even ask, Trapmaster?
    Last edited by 13_CBS; 2007-10-31 at 07:42 AM.

  10. - Top - End - #10
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    Lana

    The thin, gray elf woman looks up from her book to comment about the letter in her normal, detached voice and tone.

    "Did anyone else notice a problem? This 'Burgonmaster', appears to exist when the lord does not. I may not know alot about humans, but I can say that they don't leave other humans in charge when they leave their precious toys behind. My thoughts are that this letter is but the ravings of a madman, one who should be put down to spare others his insanity."

  11. - Top - End - #11
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    Aidan

    Looking at the letter last, Aidan looks up after Lana response and responds,
    "Perhaps the former lord was forcefully replaced by this 'Burgonmaster.' Though usually those replaced this way are killed, unless Lana right about him being mad, which may mean we could also help him without ending his life." He looks back at the letter again, trying to see what history he can remember about the village.

    Spoiler
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    history check - (1d20+9)[15]
    Thank you to starwoof for the awesome Astrid avatar.


  12. - Top - End - #12
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    Verily

    Frowning, Verily considers the letter. "It may be a deceit of some kind, but it could also be that someone genuinely needs help. I would have us look into it on the morning. A full day's ride to the west... Yes, I think it best we investigate."

    Glancing up, he looks at his companions, smiling slightly at the floating warlock. "Any other ideas?"

  13. - Top - End - #13
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    Spoiler
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    Aidan's check result:
    Hundreds of years ago, Count Strahd von Zarovich conquered Barovia and moved his family his family to the valley, fortifying Castle Ravenloft and raising it to new grandeur.


    As you contemplate the letter and its information, you realize that it is getting late and the bartender is beginning to rush some of the less sober patrons out the door.
    Last edited by oloknotwise; 2007-10-31 at 07:10 PM.
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  14. - Top - End - #14
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    The warlock floats down to the ground and lands with arms behind his back.

    "Insanity? Or madness? The first is praise-worthy, the second is corruption.

    This lord-not-lord of worms must be unearthed, yes? To the dying sun we go?"


    He glances around the emptying tavern.

    "The sun has died, and thus our time to die. " Smiling jerks his head towards the rooms, indicating for rest.
    Last edited by 13_CBS; 2007-10-31 at 07:03 PM.

  15. - Top - End - #15
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    Verily

    Glancing out of the corner of his eye at the masked warlock, Verily frowns at the mention of death.

    "Been there," he mutters under his breath. Raising his voice, he addresses the group. "Our friend is correct. The sooner we turn in for the night, the sooner we can get to the bottom of this. I shall see you all at dawn."

    Collecting his things, he nods to the bartender and proceeds to his room.

  16. - Top - End - #16
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    Delorn

    "It is indeed late... we depart tomorrow?" the trapmaker enquires. Upon a confirmation, he'll depart to his room and tinker with his gadgets and trap tools for a time, before turning in for the next day.

  17. - Top - End - #17
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    Aidan

    Neither names I remember seem to connect to town anymore, rats.
    "Looks like we have agreed then, in the morning then," Aidan smiles and takes the letter with him and heads to his room to sleep.
    Thank you to starwoof for the awesome Astrid avatar.


  18. - Top - End - #18
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    The warlock nods and floats his way up to his room without a word.

  19. - Top - End - #19
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    As you all head off to bead, the bartender nods and quietly says "good night". At the break of dawn, you all feel completely rested and ready to go. After all of the preparations are made, the bartender's wife hugs each of you goodbye and send you off in the direction of Barovia.

    Spoiler
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    The preparations mean that you have done stuff like prepare spells and the like. You can re-prepare your spells or just keep the same ones that you prepared before the campaign.

    All of you are well rested. The bartender's wife has also given you each one more set of rations.


    After a long days walk, you come to Barovia just after sunset. A fog quickly settles in.

    Gray in the fog, high stone pillars loom up from the impenetrable woods on both sides of the road. Huge iron gates hang from the stonework, dew clinging to their rusting bars. Standing before the pillars are two stone statues of armed guardians with wicked polearms. Their carved heads lie among the weeds at their feet, neatly broken from the stone shoulders. As you pass through the gates, they mysteriously close behind you. Walking a little further into the village, you realize that the village resembles more of a warzone than a peaceful village. The streets are choked with mist, limiting vision to only a few dozen feet. The buildings here at the edge of town look abandoned, burned out, or barricaded. Garbage litters the ground, and a carrion stench assaults your nose. Ahead, an overturned cart block the street.

    Spoiler
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    Here is where your first encounter comes in. Please roll for initiative and position yourselves on any square between E14-H14 and E15-H15 (spot and listen checks will require either a move or standard action). You each have one round to do something before the actual encounter starts. If you fail to post from now and my update tomorrow night (about the same time, since I work), I will assume your character does not do anything. At this time, you do not see anything other than the feint shape of the cart. The two doors closest to you will require strength checks to open.

    Here is the map:
    Last edited by oloknotwise; 2007-11-01 at 11:06 PM.
    Currently DMing:
    Expedition to Castle Ravenloft

    Amazing Radiant Servant of Pelor avatar by the more amazing Dr. Bath!

  20. - Top - End - #20
    Troll in the Playground
     
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    The Ever Smiling
    Warlock 6
    AC: 16
    Will: 5
    Ref: 5
    Fort: 4
    HP: 36/36

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    If TES already has Fell Flight on, he will start at F15, fly upwards 30 feet, and then cast Entropic Warding. If not, he will start at F15, cast Fell Flight, and move 30 feet up.



    "Madness. This is Madness."
    Last edited by 13_CBS; 2007-11-02 at 07:09 PM.

  21. - Top - End - #21
    Barbarian in the Playground
     
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    Aidan

    Looks trouble definitely made it here. Pulling out his bow Aidan looks around, trying to see what else he can notice.

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    initiative - (1d20+2)[4]
    listen - (1d20+5)[12]
    [roll=spot]1d20+5]
    Thank you to starwoof for the awesome Astrid avatar.


  22. - Top - End - #22
    Bugbear in the Playground
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    Delorn

    Grimacing at the scene, Delorn pulls both of his weapons from their sheaths, glancing around at the village wreckage.

    Spoiler
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    Standing in E15.
    Move action to draw weapons.
    Standard action to Spot / Listen
    Initiative - (1d20+3)[2](5)
    Spot - (1d20+9)[3](12)
    Listen - (1d20+9)[11](20)

    Statistics:
    HP - 31/31
    AC - 18

  23. - Top - End - #23
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    Lana

    The elven woman quietly weaves a simple protective spell around herself. With that, she grows ready to let others lead the way into the jaws of death.

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    HP: 24
    Initiative: 10
    AC: 14(14/14)

    Casting Mage Armor.

    Standing at G-15. And shouldn't fighters be in the front?
    Last edited by ZeroNumerous; 2007-11-02 at 04:08 PM.

  24. - Top - End - #24
    Barbarian in the Playground
     
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    In H15 square. Sorry about that.
    hp=25/25 ac 17 flat 15 touch 12
    Last edited by Dragoon; 2007-11-02 at 04:52 PM.
    Thank you to starwoof for the awesome Astrid avatar.


  25. - Top - End - #25
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    Verily
    HP: 50/50|AC: 18 (touch 9, flat-footed 18)|Fort +14|Ref +5|Will +6

    The hunter stalks forward slowly, his greataxe in hand. Squinting his eyes, Verily stays alert for any sign of trouble as he takes in the devastation in the streets.

    "Something's not right..." he murmurs.

    Spoiler
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    Starting at F14 and moving 20ft. north to F10. Readying a standard action to attack anything hostile that tries to strike him.

    Initiative: (1d20-1)[1]

  26. - Top - End - #26
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    Default Re: Expedition to Castle Ravenloft

    As Verily and The Ever Smiling move up, they (as does Lana) see that two zombies are behind the overturned cart. Another stands off to the side with a hungry look on its undead face. Two gore-streaked, four-footed animals that resemble a cross between a wolf and a rat bot fight over a finger. However, their attention quickly turns to the warlock and the paladin. Their eyes glimmer with a rabid fury.

    You all realize that the zombies are dressed in commoner's clothing and resemble simple people.

    In the distance, you each here people yelling briefly, then all goes silent.

    Spoiler
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    Here is the map for the beginning of the first round:


    Initiative Order:
    22 (+6) - ?
    13 (+0) - Zombies
    11 (+3) - TES
    10 (+0) - Lana
    5 (+3) - Delorn
    4 (+2) - Aidan
    1 (+0) - Carcass Eaters
    1 (-1) - Verily

    Now you may post for round 1. I will then make it happen.

    Please note that everyone sees the single zombie not behind the cart. However, only TES and Verily (and Lana) see the zombies behind the cart.
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  27. - Top - End - #27
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    The Ever Smiling
    Warlock 6
    AC: 16
    Will: +5
    Ref: +5
    Fort: +4
    HP: 36/36


    "Ah, two that hunger for flesh, and three unsleeping, one seen, two obscured..."

    He raises a hand to point out the two behind the cart, and quickly shifts that hand towards the carcass eater on the right and lets out a blast of Eldritch energy.

    Spoiler
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    Eldritch Blast on Carcass Eater D5, ranged touch attack:

    (1d20+7)[24]


  28. - Top - End - #28
    Bugbear in the Playground
     
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    Verily
    HP: 50/50|AC: 18 (touch 9, flat-footed 18)|Fort +14|Ref +5|Will +6

    Seeing the zombified corpses, Verily raises his axe and charges in to attack.

    Spoiler
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    Verily will charge at the nearest zombie with line of effect to him. If they haven't moved, that means the zombie at I5. Otherwise, any zombie that qualifies for a charge. Preferably one that's undamaged.

    +2 attack, -2 AC, then. Power attacking for 3.

    Attack: (1d20+9)[10]
    Damage: Axe: (1d12+5)[12]
    Favored enemy: +2
    Favored power attack: +9
    Augment crystal: (1d6)[6]

  29. - Top - End - #29
    Bugbear in the Playground
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    Delorn

    "Zombies..." Delorn mutters, spitting to the side, even as he moves forward to join the fray.

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    Move Action: Forward to E9
    Standard Action: Partial Defense (+2 AC)

    HP: 31/31
    AC: 20*
    Fort: +6
    Ref: +10
    Will: +2

    *Being next to the wall gives him partial cover against certain targets, I believe.

  30. - Top - End - #30
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    Lana

    The elven woman weaves yet another spell, this one conjuring forth a ten foot square of icky black grease upon the ground right below their zombie enemies. "I would not step on that, if I were you."

    Spoiler
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    Grease on E4. It should be wide enough to catch F-G4 and the carrion eater at D5. DC 19 Reflex Save(11+6+2) or they fall prone and must spend an action standing.

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