Along A Not-So Lonely Road

This session was massive and I will be bullet-pointing it to make it less ridiculously long to read and re-cap.

- The party went back to the inn before, and woke up with some familiar friends present! They decide to start off again after realizing the rain wouldn’t let up and convincing Cyrus to go.

- Itxaro prayed to her God to stop the rain, which he could not do. The wind got a little better, though! Almost undetectably so.

- Marge the innkeep’s daughter decided to tag along and brought a tarp for the scrolls and paper and junk.

- Itxaro, Eru, Theriata, Rauva, Krriok, Volet, Raeneth, and Gnash all tag along for the adventure into the vale. IT IS VERY FOGGY!

- The party set off along the one road heading into the vale! They spotted a silhouette between the trees on a hilltop that looked human and wasn’t moving. There are a lot of birds all up in the trees, too!

- Violet, Eru, and Itxaro decided to see what the heck was casting this shadow and staring at them!

- Turns out it’s only a scarecrow. A burlap, stitched-smile scarecrow. Nothing strange here! It makes them feel uneasy, but only in the small way that a scarecrow super far from civilization in the middle of nowhere guarding no crops can do.

- Eru finds out there’s NOTHING INSIDE OF IT GIVING IT SHAPE. That makes their fear a little more justified!

- Itxaro thought it would be a great idea to rip this thing out of the ground and bring it with! Violet protested loudly, and even Eru seemed to think it was a terrible idea and that this thing was unfortunate and unnatural. Raeneth agreed, as did literally everyone else.

- After only a few minutes of having this thing, they decide to go put it back! Itxaro sticks it back into the ground exactly as they found it.

- The party then continues down the road until it gets too narrow to pass the caravans through. Looks like they’d have to continue on foot!

- With party rangers scouting ahead, they note someone crouching in the brush and undergrowth where the road began to widen. Spotted, the man triggers a DEADFALL TREE TRUNK TRAP!

- A few party members were minorly damaged by the trap, but the worst part was that the party was separated by that big ol’ trunk!

- COMBAT WITH BANDITS START! Three rangers, three swordsmen, and a bandit captain!

- The bandits are super gross and keep making kissy noises at people, Krriok shoots 2 in the throat, Raeneth has 3 daggers in her, Theriata scares a guy the heck away, Rauva punches and kicks, Eru stabby stabs, Itxaro slices ’n dices, Violet misses and hits a few times, and Gnash stays back with civvies!

- By the end of it the bandit captain is taken captive and tied up, and the other bandits are murdered except one who fled from Theriata.

- Bandit captain wakes up eventually and party moves to interrogate him! Or, like, Theriata does, because she’s the big Charisma character that seems most comfortable with interrogation.

- Theriata tries to use Charm Person 4 TIMES on this bandit man and he resists each time. She then uses friends to ask him where the bandit base is (and that the bandit queen’s name is Veronica) and he— unable to resist, really, tells them east and then snaps-to. He immediately accuses Theriata of being in his head.

- Raeneth seems sickened by this entire situation and walks away to the other side of the deadfall trunk, Itxaro, shaking with rage, follows, and a concerned Rauva does as well.

- Bandit captain fights a bit, gets mad and says this is typical behaviour for Theriata’s (tiefling) kind, and then spits in her face. Gross.

- The party lets him go and he, drained and clearly vulnerable, departs into the woods.

- Krriok tells Theriata he is very disappointed in her. Theriata says ‘fuck you’.

- Itxaro talks of how horrible that was, how she can’t believe it happened, while Rauva remains fairly quiet and merely asks Raeneth if she’s okay. Raeneth seems…not great. She seems like she knows about this sort of thing more than she is willing to talk about in the middle of horror-woods.

- The party decides to camp in the bandit clearing as it’s pretty fucking defensible. Why not? They set up watches, and take shifts throughout the night to make sure nothing stupid happens.


- Also, there stuff has been moved around and a few, minor things are missing. Like socks.

- The scarecrow smells very bad. The party approaches it, and finds out that it’s filled with…meat. A few people barf, and it’s altogether pretty gross. After a moment, there’s a sloshing, grinding noise from the scarecrow, and Itxaro decides to smite it!

- As it rips apart and begins to burn, the scarecrow smells faintly of rotting meat, though there’s nothing inside as it falls to the ground and starts turning to ash. Spooky!

-The group is supremely unsettled! It doesn’t help that they’ve now noticed crows and owls up in the trees that seem to follow their path, watching them curiously. Krimson goes to throw a rock at one, and the birds merely flap out of the way before shifting back into place.

- Eru decides to talk to them. The birds are dumb and just insist that they are friends and are watching. Eru gives them some snacks. It’s nice. The stay with the party the whole time!

- The party continues forward with Cyrus. After navigating over another big tree trunk they start through the woods! Cyrus is following a map. There’s a number of places he wants to stop at! The first one is a 4 foot tall obelisk with some worn markings on it. Looks like there are little people! Pretty neat. Some are small, some are tall, and there’s a big, looming figure behind the entire scene.

- Krriok is very uncomfortable here! As is Raeneth. This place seems wrong and those most in-tune with nature seem most uncomfortable here.

- Cyrus finds a bone blade shaped like a leaf! Seems like it’s recent.

- The party notices Marge is gone! Uh-oh!

- After back-tracking, they find her. She’s slumped against a tree. When she comes-to she tells the party she can’t remember what happened. She dozed off, something called her name through the fog, she followed and then…she woke up! Her things are missing, her pack misplaced.

- Itxaro picks her up and carries her back and the party starts back off again!

- The feeling of unease only grows. Krriok continues to be vocal about his discomfort and Raeneth, again, agrees. This place ain’t right.

- They find stick effigies of people hanging from tree branches! Spooky. Krriok hates them. They also find multiple arrows lodged in trees, and little mounds where it looks like the earth has been disturbed. Upon digging, there’s just more dirt! No dead bodies!

- They see a formless silhouette through the fog. When trying to follow, they only see undisturbed ground and general forest detritus.

- Time to keep adventuring! Oh boy! Surely only fun, interesting finds that will bring the party closer together await!

- Just kidding. The party wanders into an abattoir. It’s terrible. There’s a huge, over 6-foot tall black stone obelisk in the center, caked in dried— and partially fresh— blood. Bodies are eviscerated around it, no one’s dead form fully intact. The image on it is similar to the others, though it seems recently re-carved. The massive, looming figure is clearer. It has huge wings and troubling eyes.

- The party recognizes the bandit that fled from Theriata…or, uh. They recognize parts of him. Most people barf.

- The obelisk depicts the same image as before, but with more details. Some of the figures wear headdresses. Some have knives. There are figures at the foot of the obelisk “laying down”.

- After slowly recovering, the party decides this is their grand sign to book it. Cyrus agrees, and they start heading back to the bandit clearing as quickly as they can.

- Again, the party sets up watches as they rest.

- Marge approaches Rauva and Itxaro and tells them that she snuck a peek at Cyrus’s books while he was sleeping. Apparently the “Ancient Ones” he talks about used to worship demons, traded with them, made pacts with them, and even…fuct them. She thinks that the weird stuff happening is because of them. That maybe they’re still here and living underground like the book says. She is clearly troubled by this.

- Itxaro and Rauva decide to check into this! Rauva goes into Cyrus’s tent and takes his book. All the information Marge spoke of is there, it’s just written as baseless accusation and Cyrus’s notates explicitly that this is mostly rumour and has no evidence.

- In the morning, the damn scarecrow is back. It’s empty again.

- More troubling though, is the fact that Violet wakes the party up letting them know she couldn’t find Krimson in his tent when she went to do morning wake-up calls. He’s just gone.

- Trying to look around his tent tells the party nothing. There’s just disturbed earth in some areas and no trackable evidence.

- Rauva admits to Cyrus that she snagged his book. He seems upset and says he didn’t want to worry the party, and they accuse him of not warning of the dangers. Noelle comes to his defense and says that they did, though that’s not a good enough answer.

- The party goes wandering looking for Krimson. The birds are no help. An entire tree is covered in creepy effigies. It sucks. They find nothing. Night sets in and they decide to camp.

- SURPRISE ATTACK! Strange, crouched, pale, gaunt, rat-like creatures descend on the party. Some hide int he fog and are difficult to hit, but the party deals with them okay.

- Their blades are coated in a poison that blinds. Only Raeneth ends up staying blinded after the battle, because she sucks the most.

- The party captures one of these monsters and ties it up! They love to do that, apparently. What that says about their morals is up for debate.

- Cyrus and Noelle are gone, as is most of their gear and supplies. Only those damn disturbed patches of earth remain.

- The party asks blind Raeneth to talk to this monster. She thinks this is dumb, but tries it. The thing screams at her uninterrupted for like three minutes before she says this is a dumb idea. Then they let it go.


- There’s no evidence. There never is. Only holes in the ground. The party decides to try to go back to the massacre area, and the effigy tree.

- A snow white owl presents itself to Itxaro. She recognizes it as an aspect of her God, Owdur. The owl hoots, Eru talks to it, and it tells them to follow it.

- The party follows the God Bird, because when a God appears to you as a bird you fucking follow it, right?

- It takes them to an enormous tree with gnarled, tangled roots that extend partially above the ground. There’s an entrance hole amidst the roots, wide enough for people to squeeze through.

- Gnash stays above-ground with Theriata and Marge. The rest of the party descends below, knowing this to be the underground spot they need to be. After all, DM intervention owl told them to. Though Bigshot informed the players after that the owl was going to show up and help in other ways no matter what.

- The entrance leads deep underground. It is dark and dank and kind of gross.

- The party wanders into a large chamber. There are 5 statues in the center and an exit to the East and West. Before they can decide where to go, vines begin to close over all the entrances, making them impassable.

- Light flickers in the statue’s eyes, and the party enters combat!

- The first statue is a dark, hooded figure.
The second statue is a rotting, emaciated figure that extends a single, gnarled finger.
The third statue is corroded and seems like it depicts a fat, toad-like creature.
The fourth statue Is an amorphous blob of slime? Or something?
The fifth statue resembles the massive form on the obelisks, with large wings.

- The party destroys the fifth statue first. The second statue poisons Rauva. Eru is covered in acid by the fourth statue, and terrified of the third statue. It terrifies Raeneth as well, but the party eventually bests the damn statues, even if they’re spooky.

- Once they beat the stone figures the doors open again. The party opts to go West.

- Green light begins to darken and intensify as they proceed through the tunnel. The energy is strange here, and eventually the tunnel widens into a chamber. The green light is bright here, and the party sees a bunch of those rat-creatures in a large circle in the largest room connecting.

- The party also sees Noelle and Krimson. The latter lays upon an alter, his torso slit open. The former is holding a bloodied knife that…likely did the slitting.

- Upon the party spotting her, Noelle laughs and says, “Oh, man—” The green light accents her face as she turns to the party, a wide, wicked, crazed smile on her face. She does not seem like the quiet, gentle, detail-oriented Noelle they knew.

- The green light seems to be emanating from above them. When the party looks up, they see Cyrus, suspended by roots. They seem to be weaving in and out of his flesh, holding him to the top of the cave wall. The glow is…coming from him.

Will the party find out what motivated Noelle? Will the party be able to stomach her gross villain monologue? Will they live to pet another dog?


Bigshot Bigshot

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