Introduction to the campaign available here.
- Balko, dour dwarf
- Father Egg, cleric of peculiar smells
- Skokul, emaciated fighter
- Twig, chipper elf
- Honourable mention: Nabber, aloof thief who had to depart early in the proceedings
SPOILERS TO FOLLOW – DON’T READ IF YOU HOPE TO PLAY THROUGH THE EVILS OF ILLMIRE IN THE FUTURE.
SAFE FOR CURRENT PLAYERS TO READ.
Session 1 – 15 April, 2021
Day 1 | Morning
Our protagonists find themselves sat opposite each other in a cramped wagon as part of a caravan of travellers and adventurers bound for Illmire, a hitherto unnoteworthy town with little to say of it apart from a recent spat of rumours declaring it to be neighbour to great untapped treasures and adventures.
Most individuals kept to themselves except for Balko fruitlessly asking if anyone had heard any news of or from the Obsidian Forge (home to a cousin of his) and Twig finding himself invited by a sniffly Illmirean returning home to join him in discipleship to ‘The Mistress’ who could make all cares and worries go away. Despite initial rejection, the weaselly enthusiast declared that they need only ask for Ormol at the tavern and he would personally bring them to the Mistress.
Even in the bright mid morning, the only activity in Illmire seemed to be people peering from windows and doorways at the new arrivals, and this band of would-be heroes – a group of convenience as much as anything else – headed straight for the tavern to pick some locals’ brains.
Balko’s search for information on his cousin’s whereabouts elicited only one wary local pointing to the tallest mountain of a range in the distance, while Skokul’s queries after the whereabouts of a Sgt Wilfred – who he’d been led to believe was a decent individual appreciative of reliable sword arms – provoked a dismissive comment from the women behind the bar that Wilfred was away visiting his ailing mother and that the town militia were doing just fine without him anyway.
Distinctly dissatisfied with these findings, the group decided to try their luck at the local temple, a distinct white marble building surrounded by wattle-and-daub houses, though Father Egg was sorry to see that the array of deity symbols carved into the wall did not include his beloved Odxit, petty god of unusual smells. Unusually for the time of day, the place seemed shut, and the windows boarded up.
Skokul hammered on the door until finally a muffled voice told them the temple was undergoing renovations and that Father Rand was carrying out his pastoral duties for the many infirm on the outskirts of town. No, he didn’t know where Sgt Wilfred was, other than visiting his aunt, and Captain Frey was doing perfectly well without him anyway. No, they could not come in and help renovate.
Tiring of this, Skokul offered a tithe to the temple instead, causing the figure behind the voice to open the door just a crack. This was all the emaciated yet surprisingly strong fighter needed and, somewhat to his companion’s surprise, he flung the door all the way open, flooring the purple-robed individual behind it. Before the party could restrain him he called out in alarm, bringing five similarly-clad allies wielding daggers from across the great hall.
While the floored temple-dweller scrambled around for his own dagger, Balko called out in the language of Law that this was all a misunderstanding. With no sign of understanding in their faces, he raised his mace about the floored man and suggested that everyone pause and talk. Seeing no concern for their ally from the other robe-wearers, he sighed and brought his mace down on the doorman’s spine.
Father Egg took one blow which drew blood through a gap in his armour, and Twig’s shoulder was sliced by a dagger which caused more pain than the strike had any right to. Though greater in number, robed men and women were no fighters and were quickly dispatched, though one survived to snarl that the Mistress would see this wrong righted as the party tied and gagged him.
Seeing that there was no immediate indication that an alarm had been raised outside the temple, the party decided to quickly investigate further. Balko and Skokul rifled through their vanquished foes’ pockets, unearthing a pair of rubies, a scroll which Twig later confirmed to be a magical counter to fear, and an exquisite dagger which had cut into Twig‘s shoulder.
Leaving their companions to their looting, Twig and Father Egg explored the area where the robed reinforcements had come, coming across a smashed and desecrated stone altar and a crude wooden one being constructed in its place, which put the party somewhat at ease that they hadn’t slaughtered a group of innocent clergy. Each adventurer also registered a feeling a deep unease with no visual source. Listening at doors and peering through key holes, there was no sign that anyone else was present until Twig heard some muffled voices just off the main hall, voices which sounded more fearful than angry.
Pushing through the door revealed four bound prisoners who, upon being released, declared themselves to be acolytes to Law and keepers of the temple. One introduced herself as Bexa, assistant to the temple’s priestess Nivendra, and warned the rescuers of Father Rand. Apparently Nivendra had changed drastically soon after his arrival, her sunny disposition replaced with a sullen glower to all, and Sgt Wilfred had gone missing a few days after an argument with the new priest. A few weeks ago the temple keepers were rounded up and imprisoned, and each week one had been taken from them and never seen again.
Now feeling a lot better about the earlier bloodshed, the adventurers debated amongst themselves as to what to do with these freed prisoners and the captured attacker; if the temple and militia had been compromised them would it be safe to remain in Illmire. As the party deliberated, Bexa noted that she’d overhead talk of the Mistress’ son was residing in the temple’s catacombs.
As she was speaking, there came the sound of voices from outside the room’s boarded up windows, and the party tensed up. That is where we concluded the session.
30 XP to the four characters present for encounters overcome.
Click here for session 2.