Tales of Stroldaax: The Deck of Dragons

Cheating Death
Making debts

After following a band of orcs and giants into the old dwarven mine, the Lifeless Hollows, they found their corpses insinirated within a dead end. Stupid humanoids going into a death trap!

The party found a 25m high statue of Berdol Jadestone – the master of arms – within a huge room that had the feeling of being a entrance chamber, and first line of defence. He was holding a huge dwarven waraxe and a perfect carved jadestone in his hands. Alberic sensed transmutation magic eminating from the statue; a fire spell aimed at the jadestone opened the path and the enterance to the dwarven mines.

They followed the dwarven maze down, down, down – and finally arrived in a blocked hallway. It was blocked from their side, so the party used a couple of hours clearing the path.

When they finally opened the door they were met with a horrific sight of slayed dwarves – torn asunder, sliced apart, crushed bone, insinirated skin – in the thousands. The dwarves lay in small heaps, thrown around, and alot with a horrific sight on their faces. It was clear that they had put in a might last stand, but still being slayed like ragdolls.

The mighty hall measured 150*500 meters, with 5 doors on each side, and three rows of huge pillars running down the lenght of the hall. The doors on on ons side was carved with dwarves holding carts, handpicks, showels and other mining equipment. On the other side, the doors were carved with small coffins.

At the end of the long hall a huge explosion had blown in the wall – probably the entrance of whatever had slayed the dwarves.

General Adon, enforcer Jared and magister Alberich led the way into the first coffin-room; it was beautyfully carved and fully decorated with gold on all walls and roof. Diamonds, jade, gems and all kinds of valuables were lain in intricate patterns along the walls.

Suddenly, a “swoooshhh” sounded and each and everyone stared directly into the eyes of the Beholder … Alberic, Adon and Jared got hit by a multitude of rays… and everything went black. Deaths embrace.

Jared Stromgarde

Blackness. A dead man laying – beside a disintegrated figure and a parch dry figure, drained of his life – in a dwarven golden room. Blackness.

A thousand pictures flashed before his mind – past, present and future – and in the next moment he was watching a badly scarred warrior kneeling before Kelemvors gates. The warrior had 4 seriously beaten children chained to his belt.

“LOOOORRD! A return to the old ways. And I, Jared Stromgarde, shall lead. Alberich Maksim is with me. As is Adon Alantis and Grrimwolf Greatcleave. All in our first century of scarring. We have counted coup. We have slain enemies. Restored order. Shifted the heartstones of the Adicians and Skeggitoft. And now, with the new moon and in the year of your naming, King of High House Death, we shall weave our way to the Damned. To slay the children who dwell there. A return to the old ways…”

The warrior slowly rose to his feet, and half turned his back on Kelemvors black and white grand castle. Outside the doors heaps of empety corpses lay in numerous piles. Thousands upon thousands. The sky were completly black, not a single gust of wind, not so much as a fart.

“So i vow, belowed Prince. And i shall deliver unto you a feast of trophies such as never before blackened the soil of this land. Enough, perhaps, to free you from the stone itself, so that once more you will stride in our midst, a deliverer of primordial order upon all our enemies. And the children shall, after more than four millennia, once again tremble to the coming of the eternal fire. I, Jared Stromgarde, so swear."

The warrior completly turned his back on Kelemvor and spotted Jared Stromgarde.

“You! You have already failed! What do you do with these people of chaos?" the warrior rattled his chains. “Do they embrace the church of the eternal fire, or stack upon these piles of empety chaos after you drink their blood with the lance?” Pointing towards the gates of Kelemvor, the warrior said “He only wants the souls, and thus leaves the shells for recreation.”

Jared Stromgarde, a bit shocked, stood silent watching the warrior for some time. The warrior was older than Jared – maybe by 12-15 years – and had a brutal scar tracing from his pate, down- and across his left eye. It looked grotesque. In his right hand he was holding a lance, and across his back was strapped a huge shield with the symbol of Kelemvor.

After an unknown amout of time had passed Jared acted quickly, he drank their blood with the lance, and their corpses blazed up with the ethernal fire. Primordial order restored once again.

Blackness took Jarred – he was drifting, falling, tumbling within empteyness – and once again he found himself outside Kelemvors castle, gates now open, and a black, hooded man standing within the gate. “Welcome servant, step through, embrace my ethernal sleep. It is time for you have suffered.” West of the castle Jared spotted a smal village – quick of wits and with a knowledge of Kelemvors methaphor – turned his back on the gates “I am not yet done King of Death.” Jared felt a blazing heat within himself as he started walking toward the village.

It was in a complet chaos. Killings, robbery, rape. No order. Jared took it upon himself to restore the village; he warned them thrice – no success – then he started clensing chaos. His lance drank the blood of the children and sat their corpses blazing with the ethernal fire. The last one was the scarred warrior… he killed the warrior who was himself. Blackness consumed him.

Jared woke within a dwarven, golden room, staring into the eyes of the beholder. Inside him a distant flame burned.

Adon Alantis

Blackness. A disintegrated figure laying on the floor in the golden room of the dwarves beside a dead figure and a parch dry, drained figure. Blackness.

General Adon was leading a huge army, beside him was Odin, ruler of Skeggitoft, Beyard, ruler of Adicia and general Maxim Onearm. In the ranks behind him were the ruler of Grioshein and Vesmora, and 15000 eager soldiers. ATTACKKKK!!!” Blackness, drifting.

Before him stood 4-5 robed – thin, shallow, skeletal – men with an army of chaos. Blackness.

His army were beeing obliterated with a rain of fire, magical demons, and people just falling dead to the ground. Blackness. Adon lies on his side – his horse beside him with a spear through the belly – with a mortal wound. A barbed, rusty sword pierced his right lung, punctured his belly and ripped through his back. Fading he saw Maxim killing creatures with his ghost hand. Blackness. As the last of his army get slaughtered by magical rain, Jericho The Arcane suddenly appears in front of the robed enemy slashing through flesh and bone. The frenzied enemy tries to obliterate him with arcane power, but the spells are deflected or absorbed. He cuts down the last robed enemies, then dissapears. Blackness consumes Adon as his last blood leaves his veins.

The general sees a huge black and white castle – gates open – with a black hooded man standing within, just to the west of the castle a little light flickers. Adon chooses to go towards the light, and embrace it.

Flashing before him was a excellent made road – flawless, traveling into a sunrise – and at the far end, before the sun, stood a tall man “You owe me Adon Alantis.” Blackness.

Adon woke within a dwarven, golden room, staring into the eyes of the beholder. Inside him a slight unease of death burned.

Alberich Maksim

Blackness. A parch dry, drained figure laying on the floor in the golden room of the dwarves beside a dead figure and a disintegrated figure. Blackness.

Visions

Alberich woke within a dwarven, golden room, staring into the eyes of the beholder. Inside him a new knowledge burned.

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Bloodhounds
The defensive line

The Lord demands that the general speed up building the defense of Vesmora! So far they have just organised the coins needed, but no order was sent to start building watchtowers, or the keep on Adician boarder.

The day before a soldier, near death, came back to Fort Crestshine with a tale of slaughter. His troop was ambushed during the night by giants and orcs. 29 dead, 20 M.I.A. and 1 survivor.

The generals blood was now boiling, he assembled a forward scouting troop; 10 riders and his collegues on the council. Togehther they rode westward. After a few days they found the slaughter place, and alot of tracks heading southwest. As a supreme tracker, the general easly tracked the band. During the next 4-5 days they joined another troop of 50 soldiers and came across 3 burned down Grioshein watchtowers. On the 5th day they found the ravaging band laying sige to the 4th watchtower.

The next 30 minutes changed the lives of 18 infantery, 2 giants, a band of orcs and the Grioshein defenders. The most epic moment was when the Magister and the Diplomat rode forward just to provoke the giants to hail rocks on them, if they hadnt done this, the whole infantery unit would have been slaughtered by hailing rocks. As one rock smashed through the unit and killed 18 loyal soldiers.

They wiped out the band and burned the bodies. A successfull mission where the troops started chanting “Victory! Victory! Battle at the Serpent river!”.

Diplomat and Inquisitor

  • During 4 days they sniffed out a secret network and a double agent among their midsts.
  • Nefara the silk merchent out of Tharos is plotting revenge on the Prince
  • The Prince killed his family when he traded illegally and without a licence
  • Nefara is plotting in all the capital cities – trying to break relations and make a huge war on Tharos
  • 2 of his ravens are in the possession of Fort Crestshine

Magister

  • Albert found a book (volume 24) about elven families, and within a reference to the first leader Faeranduil and his symbol – the four leaf clover.
  • They have an army dissapearing and apparing
  • Albert remembered that Feénduil is also wearing the four leaf clover
  • There used to be forests where there now is a waste.

Vesmora

  • The council decided to try to secure the lifeless hollows because of a map they found when raiding the mountains; where arrows pointed towards the cave, Adicia and Vesmora.
  • Just after entering the cave, in the ceiling, there was carved something into the rock, in beautiful runes. Luckely the Magister knew dwarven.
  • It was written BEWARE THE BEHOLDER
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The bandit culling
Risky mounterneering

Diplomat

  1. Sent and envoy to Tharos
  2. The contact in Fort Crestshine (OOG Vildemar) are ordered to seek information about a secret network (ref. Darrius the double agent).

Enforcer

  1. The Elite unit are ordered to infiltrate the common people within Fort Crestshine to root out possible secret networks

Magister

  1. Ordered his initiated to learn from each other so they will advance faster.

Vesmora

The pilgrims have arrived at Fort Crestshine to gain coin for offerings to the great volcano Suhix. The party decided to protect the pilgrims on their journey to the mountain because of the orcs and bandits. This turned out to be a smart decition; orcs and bandits had laid an ambush. The party fought tough and well and defeated the ambush.

The party decided that in the end it was for nothing because the pilgrims threw themselvs into the neverending cavity with the gold – a real offering, indeed.

After the incident, the volcano had a smal outburst revealing molten rock and gold flowing down the mountain side. This sprung the idea that they can mine this to earn money, and they decided that the lifeless hollows are worth exploring.

Furthermore the party went venturing into the mountains in search of the bandit camp. They found two camps within a deep valley; one they destroyed by a big rock avalanche which almost killed three of the partymembers, as they hung in a rope of the mountaintop. The other they assulted and killed 11 orcs. One got away to alert King Akaros, the cloud.

They found a mystical map with arrows towards the lifeless hollows, Vesmora and Adicia.

The next day reinforcemnts arived to the destroyed camps, and the party decided to return to Fort Crestshine with the new information.

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The humble beginning
Fort Crestshine

The general

  • Alot of riots within the state, and it is topped when a orc party killed a farmer just outside the fort.
  • Envestigations reveal that orcs and bandits work togehter
  • By searching the bandits they have found the symbol of Odin tattooed on the chest
  • Roumors say that Odin is feeling the terrain
  • Founded an elite unit concisting of 11 people called The Inquisitors led by Jared Stromgarde.
  1. Female Rouge
  2. Female Ranger
  3. Female Ranger
  4. Male Fighter
  5. 2x Male Monks
  6. 2x Male Barbarians
  7. Male Rouge
  8. Male Cleric
  9. Leman Wizard (Focuses on concilment, detection and protection)

Royal Enforcer

  • Darrius Crazy eyes are sentenced to death and the task falls to the councils headsman. With his spear he impaled Darrius.
  • He is sentenced as a local bandit by the Lord, but later it is revealed that he was employed as the spymaster, but worked as a doubleagent for Adicia

Magister

  • He have seen great visions of the past. And with Vesmora being without a magister the task falls to Alberic Maksim.

Diplomat

  • He have dispatched ravens to Adicia to setup a meeting.
  • Adicia is violating the boarders to Vesmora
  • A theory is that the bandits/orcs works with the Adician army
  • Rumors say that General Maxim is observed wandering the waste and along the boarders to Adicia
  • Sent an envoy to Tharos enquiring about trade agreements.
  • Alessia Aeran (elf) is diplomat from Adicia

Vesmora

  • A mutual friendship is agreed upon with Vesmoran and Adicia (aid each other in war)
  • Conditions are as follows: Adicia will get 2/3 of Skeggitofts land, Vesmoras old boarders are reinstated, Vesmora will trade 50% of its exported fish to Adicia and in return they will get 40% of exported wood from Adicia
  • Troops will engage Adician troops 1 km within the boarders
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