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5/20/2022 7:39 pm  #81

Re: A Crow's Nest Upon Bleak Shores

Session 25 Part One!

In the frosty aftermath of the last excursion, the PC’s huddled in the warmth that Helios offered, such as it was. During this time, the cleric divined an omen asking Apollo to send a sign when the red moon is right to confer information to the paladin about a future event. A vision manifested showing a dreary castle and woe-begotten courtyard fallen to disuse. The vision carried on as if by a raven’s eye lifted upward to one of the towers that glowed with a crimson light revealing a tall, gaunt and well-dressed figure looking out into the courtyard with a red orb on an ornate stand behind him that glowed as if a furious storm brewed inside the sphere. The two discerned this was a location far northeast of their current locale. As they pondered what the vision could mean, a thunderous noise erupted as an avalanche happened sending living beings scurrying for shelter and out of the way of the oncoming wave of snow and ice. Next, a pallid green glow began spreading around the town from quite a distance encasing it like some sort of dome closing it off from the outside environs. From beyond the glow which appeared to kill animals that had the misfortune of being in its path, the clamor of hoofbeats, battle cries and harsh chaotic music filled the air. It looked like a poisonous noxious dome that threatened to close off and kill those trapped within. Wasting no time, the PC’s hurriedly rushed to try to get to the source of the green gaseous haze.

The avalanche had blasted and scoured the snow and ice shelfs and left behind cold stone which had ominous pillars like smaller obelisks as well as roughly carved statues of people standing around depicting various stages of grief. A bridge was spotted that spanned over a previously covered ravine and it went into the greenish substance. At the foot of the bridge was what appeared to be missing stone slabs that were forcibly removed from their resting place. The ranger and barbarian saw three distinct types of tracks that led away from that scene into three differing directions. Some appeared to be humanoid, others animalistic and one clearly monstrous. Inspecting the statues more closely disturbed some of them which animated with violent intent! Scowling gargoyles soon went on the assault against the PC’s! The bard and his fiery ally lashed at the cold living stone with fiery blades as the paladin and ice lord struck another. The cleric, ranger and barbarian went after the remaining two. As cold stone tore into their flesh, the PC’s were able to demolish the gargoyles completely with the cleric aiding in healing. The PC’s then pondered the riddle of the stone slab area and its missing contents and then resolved to follow the northward trail as that seemed as if some loping or shorter flight creature had left marks and indentations in the snow pack indicating a heavier weight was burdening the creature.

Following a strange random route as the “tracks” left discomfiting signs soon appeared. Bloodstains dotted the snow as well as signs of violence. Soon a fleshy bit would turn up and screeches filled their ears as in the darkness ahead illumined by the ghastly greenish glowing cloud showed the silhouettes of flying long beaked things tearing apart a large humanoid as they gorged on it leaving grisly remains and belongings strewn about. Rushing closer, the PC’s soon saw them as large pterandons who looked bitter from the cold as well as hunger. The eyes of the flying creatures soon saw the PC’s and flew towards them as it was clear their hunger was not sated! Quickly the ranger unleashed arrows to fell one from the sky where it crashed nearby him in an enraged heap. The barbarian, paladin and ice lord unleashed attacks of their own and the cleric slowed one down. The bard utilized his magical ability to speak withanimals to see if he could discern what they wanted and if possible stop the melee before more blood was spilt. He succeeded in getting two of the creatures to stand down under the promise that more food would be provided for them. In the time that took, the PC’s sustained gashes in their flesh as well as bites and slaying two of the pterandons that assailed them. After leaving generous portions of foodstuffs, the wary flying creatures took their spoils and flew off into the blackness of the long night. Getting closer to the torn remains of what the pterandons originally were ripping apart revealed fleshy chunks of what was some kind of hairy human as far as they could tell from remains. To the side of the gory scene discarded in the snow was a large stone tile of sorts with a weather worn letter X on it. The type of stone matched what they saw at the bridge. The PC’s then took the object back to the bridge area to see where it might fit. It became clear they might need the other pieces to reassemble the damaged area. After a revival of their health and spirits, the PC’s followed another set of tracks that were westward from the bridge.

The cluster of tracks the PC’s followed now were clearly human in their imprints, or so it appeared. More unsettling was the fact that others from seemingly aimless directions when crossing this path joined with the initial leaving party swelling their ranks. No sign of fire or other signal penetrated the darkness as the PC’s trekked on doggedly pursuing their prey. At last in the drifts of snow in the rolling rise and fall of drifts they spotted a cluster of humans moving slowly and strangely. A lead figure in black that stood out starkly against the snow was gesticulating around the others yet no sound was heard apart from the crunching of foot on the snowpack. It was clear two of this group were carrying another stone tile and that was what slowed progress. Getting closer the PC’s marveled that this group had so much exposed skin to the frigid air except the black dressed creature who also had a hat on that resembled no clothing style native to this region. A significant portion of these travelers had enlarged bellies, like pregnant women do. The paladin sensed evil emanating from that entourage. At that notice, the light of the greenish pallor of the glow revealed that these were no living creatures, they were undead!

Last edited by MrManowar (5/20/2022 7:40 pm)

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