Under The Sun

Gnolls and Puzzles

A trimmed crew consisting of Borodin, Saum, and Dal’Shara get to work at the Earth Temple.

The trio scheme to free the captured guards despite being outnumbered by the local Gnoll clan. Saum uses a combination of fake blood, poison, and “potions of illusion” to disable the Huntmasters on watch. They launch into the camp, at first swinging feebly while the Gnoll Shaman bounces lightning between them. They manage to free the guards and arm them with handaxes. The combatants dance around each other and the campfire, trading flanking and deadly blows. Saum’s Positioning Strike sends a Marauder right into the fire. The gnolls use pack maneuvers to surround a guard and nearly kill Borodin; but, a few well-placed swords turn the tide of the fight and ensure victory. Edgar the guard murders the unconscious gnoll guards and stomps off; Ziggy the guard is emotional about the loss of the third guard. The crew make their way back to the Temple to collect reward.

With few options remaining, the trio decide to explore the Halls of Arcanery. Borodin leads them to the “clean room” with elemental tiles and traps. A bit of detective work proves the Earth hall is clear.

They advance into a large chamber with no apparent ceiling and sandy floors. Moonlight shines into this room (though it is distinctly NOT night-time). Two mysterious humanoids (Clay, a human; and Terrak, a gnoll) are chanting near a sealed treasure chest. Surrounding the room are gargoyles on a ledge 20’ up.

Clay and Terrak stall (test) the trio with a simple puzzle: how many keys does Clay have? The gargoyles mock the entire scene but Saum quickly determines that Clay has zero keys. Aha! Terrak remembers he has the key and the chest opens. Inside is an unusual scroll with the following inscription:

In this room time stands still.
A ritual binds the beast of sand.
Its casting lowers the floodgates.
The God of Time is winding
The clockwork of the universe.

Dal’Shara vaguely recalls the “God of Time” may be Pelor. On the mention of his name, the stars turn and morning rises in seconds – sunlight floods the room. The scroll is changed and now shows a story in heiroglyphics. Borodin uses his history knowledge to work out the basic story: Pelor frees some snake-woman from a prison. The identity of the snake-woman eludes them, and Clay points out it is the Lamia Queen. They recall Lamia are evil – and why would Pelor free an evil creature? Dal’Shara sees the solution and holds the parchment towards the sun – through the parchment they read the story backwards and Pelor imprisons the Lamia Queen. The images rearrange themselves into a complex ritual scroll. It is an Imprison Other ritual, but casting it in reverse will release the beast bound under the sand…

You very well need a Dwarf before setting ancient beasts free. So they go looking for Antek (and Donaar) in the Tenacious Wing, but not before convincing the competing adventurers that Saum was petrified by a trap in the Earth hall. In the Tenacious wing, Donaar is caught up in a hot game of cards and Antek has drunk himself prone. A halfling thief underestimates Borodin and tries to pilfer a few coins from his purse. Borodin catches up to the thief but Ingg The Ogre has zero patience for such disputes. Borodin pleads his case and Ingg turns the halfling upside down – distinctive Eladrin coins fall from the thief. He throws the halfling into The Pit and releases Borodin. Well, Borodin decides the little guy needs a lesson in manners. He descends into the pit and faces off against the halfling (but not before all three place bets in favor of Borodin). The halfling gets in a cheap shot before Borodin is ready. Saum and Dal’Shara try to sway the crowd, cheer on Borodin, and intimidate the halfling. Borodin needs only two expert sword swings to drop the halfling at his feet – even this hardened crowd is impressed by Borodin’s finesse.

Rewards (Borodin, Saum, and Dal’Shara)
  • 650 xp each
  • 263 gp each (50gp of that is a gnoll necklace of baubles and animal teeth)
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The Gate of Worlds

Full story at Interlude 1.

  • Traveled(?) to a massive game board and fought the guards of the “real world.”
  • Body count: Charles Babbage, Ian Fleming(?), John James Audubon, Edward Teller(?), Isambard Kingdom Brunel.
  • XP earned: 490 XP
  • Total XP: 4765 XP (Borodin – 5215).
  • 1 spiked chain (superior two-handed flail)
  • Level 6 magic item (as yet unawarded).
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Halls of Tenacity

See the detailed story here: Chapter 5

  • Avoided and disabled a pit trap, disabled and reused a boulder trap, disabled an arrow and a lightning trap
  • Body count: 4 grues, young minotaur, gnoll marauder, gnoll remnant, duergar theurgist slaver, deurgar scout x2, gargoyle x4, earth archon guardian x2
  • XP earned: 750 (800 after turning in the Gnoll Artifact)
  • XP total: 4225 (Borodin has 4675). After the Gnoll Artifact that’s 4275 (4725).
  • Gold earned: +120 each
  • Total gold each: 530 gp each (plus your starting gold, minus your total expenditures)
  • 4 gnoll trinkets
  • 2 gnoll weapons
  • Saum earns a level 6 item
  • Antek earns a level 5 item
  • Donaar earns a level 4 item
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Borodin: Investigative Historian

Borodin explores the dangerous underground wings of the dungeon. Dodges ochre jellies, grues, and rust monsters. He deciphers ancient symbols and gets a study “date”, gets crit by a gnoll arrow, and buys a round for the local ruffians. See his report here.

  • Borodin xp: 450
  • Borodin rewards: gnoll dagger, +2 to knowledge checks concerning the Earth Temple
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Welcome to the Temple
... we got fun and games

Borodin, Saum, and Donaar arrive at the Temple of the Yellow Skulls and find a strange set of inhabitants. Obsessed researchers on one side, rowdy pit fighters on the other.

See the details on the story wiki: Chapter 4

  • no body count, no encounters
  • just RP this short session
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Keep on the Shadowfell - Finale

Read the story here: Chapter 3

Encounter 1: Demon Army Defensive
  • Warchief Demon, Bilespitter Demon x2, Bloodsoldier Demon x2, Wretched Demon x4
  • 175 xp
Encounter 2: Showdown at the Shadowfell
  • Kalarel, Writhing Construct, Shadow Tendril x3
  • 900 bonus xp for saving 9 sets of bound souls, killing Kalarel, and the wild experience of trans-dimensional travel. This includes completing the entire Kalarel quest line.
  • Borodin and Selenus get a Level 4 magic item parcel each.

The heroes have saved the souls of 63 villagers. 7 villagers did not survive the ritual.

Borodin returns the Battle Standard of Winterhaven.

The Head of Kalarel quest is complete, 500gp total reward.

You bring Kalarel’s protege Ninaran back to justice in Fallcrest. 200gp total reward. Ninaran is sentenced to death by hanging.

TOTALS:
  • 3525 xp each (Note you reach level 4 at 3,750 xp)
  • 410 gp each (plus your starting gold, minus your total expenditures)
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Keep on the Shadowfell 2

Keep on the Shadowfell – Session 2

Read the story here: Chapter 2

Encounter 1: Hungry Ghouls
  • Ghoul x2, Zombie x2, Zombie Rotter x4
Encounter 2: Goblin Slaves
  • Skulleater Demon, Torturer Demon, Creeper Demon x2, Bilespitter Demon
Encounter 3: Statue Trap Room
  • Large Warrior Statue, Dragon Statue x2, Cherub Statue x4
Encounter 3: Burial Hall
  • Prayed at altar and avoided combat
Encounter 4: Spectre of Sir Keegan
  • Skill challenge success

Discovered dragon figurines—silver figurines with platinum inlay. One for each character. These will protect you against Kalarel’s evil, after which they can be kept or sold for 60gp each.

Each character has earned 250gp total from adventuring (this does not count the dragon figurines, your starting gold, or your expenditures).

Each character now has 2450xp and is level 3. Be sure to figure out your new HP, healing surge values, and Encounter Power.

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Keep on the Shadowfell 1

Keep on the Shadowfell – Session 1

Read the story here: Chapter 2

Rescuing Winterhaven Reward: +1 armor for Antek

Encounter 1: Skill Challenge to find the necrotic goods trader
  • Difficulty: 6 successes before 3 failures
  • 125 xp awarded
  • 200gp awarded

Mission: Bring back the head of Kalarel. 500gp rewards. Mission item: Battle Standard of Winterhaven

Disarm the trap door leading down to the keep: 50xp

Encounter 2: Cultist Guards
  • Human Guard x2, Gnome Skulk x2, Rat Swarm, Deathjump Spider, Human Rabble x3, Iron Defender
  • 170 xp awarded
  • 52 gp, two rings 15gp each, turquoise 75 gp, deck of playing cards

XP Total: 1865xp

Solved the riddle of the ancient armor. Reward: +1 Blackiron Armor

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King's Road 2

Session 5: King’s Road part 2

Read the story here: Chapter 1

Encounter 1: Graveyard Necromancy
  • Gnome Necromancer (flavored Gnome Arcanist), Skeleton x2, Zombie x2, Zombie Rotter x2, Decrepit Skeleton x2, Gravehound x2
  • 175 xp each
  • Vicious Longsword +1 (Borodin)
  • Magic Dagger +2 (Sweetlick for now)
  • Pouch of clear crystals
  • Necromancer Ritual Book (language unknown)
Encounter 2: Siege on Winterhaven
  • Zombie Hulk (custom solo), Decrepit Skeleton x20, Zombie Rotter x40
  • 225 xp each
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King's Road 1

Session 4: King’s Road 1

Read the story here: Chapter 1

Encounter 1: Scorpion Trainer and Goblins
  • Scorpion Trainer (flavored Human Bandit), Goblin Skullcleaver, Goblin Sharpshooter, Goblin Blackblade x2, Stormclaw Scorpion x2
  • 150 xp each
  • 7 gold each (49 gold total)
  • +1 Amulet of Health (Antek)
  • Cultist Mask (mundane, Saum)
Minor Quest Complete: Find Zuruta and ask him about the crystals
  • 25 xp each
  • Level 2 reached

Sweetlick received a +1 Symbol of Life from Zuruta

Encounter 2: Stirges in the Barn
  • Stirge x6, Zombie Rotter
  • 120 xp each
  • Riding Horse
  • Half-burnt scrap of a Ritual parchment
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