The Treachery of Thronehold

S02E05 - Return to the Karrnath Vault

Where we end up trapped in the Shadowfell

We went on the mission in the first place because of a message from captain Kordaric. Prince Kolberkon, the main rival of High Prince Prince Ryger (the one for whom Kordaric is working), has struck deals with both House Lyrandar and the Order of the Emerald Claw. Kordaric had heard of a deal the Emerald Claw was able to pull for Kolberkon, but since that was taking place a lot closer to Thronehold than to the Lhazaar Principalities, he asked if the Thirteenth could take care of it. In exchange, he offered to give us one of his smaller ships to replace the one we lost on Stormhome a few months ago.

Anyway, remember our second session (season 1, episode 2), where we went to the Karrnath Vault? We had a key, spun a room, entered the Shadowfell, etc.? We had to go back there. Mara and Fen got some word of suspicious activity around there, people of the Blood of Vol (a religion) doing weird things. And also, since we ruined our boat at Stormhome way back, we needed a new one; and hey, we saw a boat last time we were in the Shadowfell…

The Mechanics took us to the area on their boat. So we walked towards the Vault, and fought some doods on the road. Our highest Charisma among our party (Yoryk, Gnarl, Lumi, Zirinee) was like 10, so we didn’t even try to Diplomacy at any point in the journey, even though most enemies sounded like they were willing to bargain.

The fight included two mounted guys and a bunch of minions (some melee, some archers); the mounted guys ran in, and pretty much ate every AoE and died. Archers were mostly picked off between Lumi’s spells and Yoryk charging everything since he can cover 16 squares in a move + charge. And at the beginning I summoned my bear spirit next to one to eat one, since summoning my companion spirit also has a range of 20.

There was no one in the courtyard of the Vault, but we encountered some undead and a hexer inside. The hexer spammed annoying debuffs: A minor Hex that would simply reduce your Atk and Damage against him (save ends), and a curse that could target hexed characters, and would cause them to be unable to use any powers for a round. Pretty bad, but he didn’t hit with that toooo often…

The giant skeletons had reach and could probably be pretty painful, but I think they borrowed your Encounter/Daily dice. You know, the d20s that might as well be d10s most of the time. They ate a couple zones of acid (or was it fire?) and grasping tides and whatnot too. There was also a vampire, which regenerated and did a fair bit of damage along with life leech, but nothing that I couldn’t outheal. Eventually it was only the hexer left, who had no real attacks and continued to spam annoyances while we beat him down.

We tried to do nonlethal damage for the finishing blow, so we could find out what they were up to, but when we knocked him out, it seemed that he poisoned himself and died anyway.

So we went into that gusty room and used the key to get to the Shadowfell. We heard some talking outside, and again, the Hexer came back. He was also accompanied by an Emerald Claw fighter dood and the Necromancer; if you remember, she managed to escape last time we fought her. The hexer was still trying to talk to us, saying that if we gave him the key, we could all return together.. but yeeah, we went with our usual strategy of killing them all. Some halfling ghost appeared out of the wall behind Yoryk and possessed him; I immediately used a half-elf racial power to grant him a saving throw, which he succeeded on.

First round of the encounter, Yoryk and Gnarl attacked the ghost. The ghost possessed Yoryk again. The Emerald Claw melee guy came closer, Necromancer shot us with a few bolts, etc… I then buffed the entire party for 4 resistance to all damage for the entire encounter, and then used an action point to get into melee range, so I could use an at-will attack that also granted someone a saving throw. I missed, but Yoryk was freed from the ghost again.

Then Lumi… first she made a huge zone (Visions of Avarice), which attempts to pull enemies into the center of the zone; if it succeeds in pulling them there, they’re immobilized until save. This pulled three enemies to there. Then she dropped another zone on the middle, which deals poison damage now, and 10 poison damage each time anyone enters the zone or starts its turn there. It also blocks line of sight.

Unfortunately the ghost and the necromancer were immune to poison. The defender guy and hexer weren’t.

So we spammed more AoE attacks on those trapped in these zones, I added another zone (which didn’t do anything at all since no one ever ended its turn there).. the Hexer had a way to teleport outside of Visions of Avarice’s range, but the poor soldier eventually died from all the zones while being immobilized and so, without having attacked at all.

The ghost managed to fail all its future possession attempts, so it was mostly just being a nuisance. Its two successful attacks dealt 5 and 4 damage, but with 4 damage resistance, that’s an effective total of 1 damage throughout the encounter.

Yoryk ate a bunch of hexes and got turned into a helpless critter many times, and the necromancer still did a lot of damage by spamming triple force bolt (which had a 50% chance to recharge each turn). Lumi moved around her poison zone to chase the Hexer and block line of sight and so, and eh, eventually we killed them all.

With his dying breath though, the Hexer attacked Yoryk, trying to get the key.

Anyway, so we saw the boat, and wasn’t sure what to do with it. On it, we found some scrolls for a ritual that could allow us to travel between the Eberron and the Shadowfell, in certain areas where the sun never reached. We weren’t sure what to do with this boat, but hey, if it’s still here, it’ll probably still be here next time we come here.

We headed back to try to get back to the real world… and the key broke. Apparently the Hexer cursed it with his final attack. So now that we couldn’t get back… we decided to take a journey on the boat.

Apparently the river looked semi-similar to one in Eberron. Not quite identical, but those of us who knew the area (Yoryk and I having great Nature checks) could draw some parallels. So we traveled southwest on the Shadowfell version of the Karrn river, towards where Thronehold should be. The land in the Shadowfell was apparently more compact or so too, so traveling in the Shadowfell was a lot quicker. As we approached there, a bunch of Shadowfell bats seemed eager to attack us… Lumi used Pyrotechnics to scare them off a bit, but apparently with a good enough Nature check, I managed to convince them not to eat us. Handle Animal equivalent and whatnot.

The current was getting stronger, but underneath a bridge it was pitch black.. so we tried steering there and using the ritual, and keeping the boat steady in the shadows as Lumi cast it. We succeeded well enough, and apparently were now in Eberron, close to Thronehold, on our new boat. We came back long before the Mechanics did.

And they complained that during the night, they were attacked by four changelings that looked like us.

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