Ghosts of Fallen Stars (Iron Gods)

Investigations and Errands in Torch, Part II
Session 4 (March/21/2017)


In-Game Date: 4711, Calistril 21

Things Done

Thc PCs continued their investigations in Torch and discovered a secret warehouse where Garmeth and the Ropefists gang are hiding something. They surrounded the house with the help of some guards but then a battle broke out.

Highlights
  • Tremors and Headaches: The PCs awoke on Calistril 21 to the vibrations of a small tremor that shook their houses. Remiliano also woke up with a strong splitting headache. They looked for more information and rumors regarding these things and found that there have been at least three more tremors since the day the flame went out. Most tremors happened around the Black Hill.
  • A Visit to Black Hill: Clarence decided to climb up the Black Hill to the place where the violet flame burned. The area where the flame danced is now a small collapsed hole of charred rock and a black goo. Clarence took a sample of this goo to Gorim and then Silveron and he discovered that it is called ‘Numerian fluids’: hazardous liquids seeping from strange places in Numeria.
  • Other Torch Problems and Rumors: Talking with Dolga, Remiliano learned that the town has a new problem: with the violet flame gone, the town citizens are now dumping refuse and waste to the Seven Tears River (instead of burning them in the fire). Dolga believes that the common headaches could be caused by that.
    Other things that they discovered were: that a woman with violet hair has been seen wandering around the area of Black Hill; and that the footprints that Konir reported in his journal were eroded and gone.
  • Invitation to Silverdisk Hall: As an act of reconciliation and apology, Garmeth sent a letter to the PCs inviting them to his business: the Silverdisk Hall gambling den, with 100 gp of paid expenses each. Clarence, Gorim, and Remiliano gambled but wasted all their complimentary money (except for Gorim who had a bit of luck), while Daemer discovered some peep holes in the walls of the gaming area. However, Clarence was found to be cheating, using telekinesis to move the roulette, and an altercation happened with a Ropefist thug. Remiliano took advantage of this distraction and silently entered Garmeth’s office and stole some important papers.
  • Garmeth’s Stolen Papers: The following papers that Remiliano stole were among other papers with mundane, routine stuff:
    • A letter for Wenny Dalrom of the Merrymaid Bordello, telling her to pay her monthly contribution in order for Garmeth to provide his protection. He threatened to tell everyone about a ‘secret’ if she did not pay.
    • Another was a short note saying that: “we must now protect the warehouse at all cost”.
    • There was a letter addressed to Garmeth and written from somebody in Scrapwall, warning about ratfolk bandits increasing their activity in the region between Torch and Scrapwall.
    • Another letter written by Garmeth, describing some problems happening in Torch: some gremlins stealing stuff from the citizens, the councilor Konir having gone missing, the violet flame going out, and also asking if there is a way to deactivate an android, just in case as there could be some in Torch. Finally Garmeth asked if the person has seen a woman with violet hair in Scrapwall.
    • A paper with a badly-drawn sketch of Silveron saying: “This is Silveron. Investigate him”.
  • Assault on the Ropefists Warehouse: After learning of a warehouse where the Ropefists could be hiding a secret, the PCs went there to scout it and wait for some guards they called, to surround it. When the guards came, the PCs opened the back door and an assault began with the Ropefists thugs. Sadly, it did not start well for the PCs, as Gorim’s little robot was destroyed.
Mysteries and Loose Ends (some more important than others)

1. What could be waiting inside Garmeth’s secret warehouse? Is it a hideout for the Ropefists gang or a place to hide another secret, or both?
2. What are the meanings behind the papers that Remiliano stole from Garmeth?
3. Who is the violet-haired woman that a citizen mentioned, and Garmeth too in one of his papers?
4. Could there be a connection among the violet flame going out, the Ropefists, the tremors, the headaches, and other things?

Awards

XP:
300 xp were given to Clarence, Daemer, Gorim, and Remiliano. An additional 200 xp was given to Remiliano for succeeding with the audacity of stealing Garmeth’s paper, thus learning his secrets and leaping the campaign a bit forward.

Treasure:
Gorim gained 20 gp while playing in Garmeth’s Silverdisk Hall, while Clarence lost 25 gp.
The loot from Gerrol (the mercenary who perished in the Black Hill caves) was sold and 56 gp was awarded to each one of: Clarence, Daemer, Gorim, and Remiliano.

GM Commentaries

This is the end of the downtime and now some heavy battles and other encounters could follow. This session ran a bit slow in the first half, mostly because of low Investigation checks. Still, I was not going to give the information for free as a consolation prize because of low die rolls.
Next time, if you think that you are having a bad night of bad rolls, use the Take 10 or Take 20 rules more often.

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Investigations and Errands in Torch, Part I
Session 3 (March/14/2017)


In-Game Date: 4711, Calistril 17 to Calistril 20

Things Done

The PCs concluded their mission in the Black Hill Caves and returned to Torch. Then a downtime began and they took part in several investigations and interactions with NPCs.

Highlights
  • The Skulks’ Revelation: After bringing the much-needed ropes to the skulks, they completed the bargain by telling the PCs of strange things beyond the big metal door when it was open: of a big cavern with desert sand in it and skeletons with four arms that rose from the sand. They also told of strange things made of metal that they have never seen.
    The skulks spoke of how a human party passed through the door twice, sealing it on the second time. The skulks were able to get their hands on a journal which they used a bit for campfire fuel. They gave the journal to the PCs, along with other treasures, and it happened to belong to Konir, telling his accounts on strange tracks he found near the Weeping Pond which led to the discovery of the caves and to subsequent expeditions.
    Finally, Gorim and Daemer spent some time trying to open the door, but it was quite hard and they did not have the needed tools. The skulks in turn used the ropes to descend through a hole into the Darklands.
  • Return to the Town Hall: The PCs swam back to Torch, carrying the two corpses they found in the caves. The waters were freezing and contaminated; Daemer got fatigue from the cold and others got sickened due to the contamination. Once outside, Silveron interviewed them about their findings and asked to be taken back to the door, where he was awestruck by the unusual metal door.
    They all went back to the townhall, where the four councilors examined Konir’s diary while continuing to throw blames among themselves for how they were dealing with all of this. Then they cast votes and declared the PCs innocent. Dolga encouraged them to keep looking for Konir and for a way to re-ignite the violet flame, offering bounties for these two tasks (4,000 gp each) and some help. Seranna in turn suggested sealing the pit in the cave leading to the Darklands.
  • Returning the Bodies: The two bodies found in the caves were returned to Torch and Daemer and Gorim sought to identify them. The female half-orc corpse was of a Brigh disciple named Parda and Joram Kester prepared a funeral for her with the help of gravedigger Mylan.
    The other body was of Gerrol, a mercenary that wanted to marry a blacksmith’s daughter named Emelia.
  • A Visit to the Foundry Tavern: Gorim and Daemer went to Konir’s home and tavern after exiting the townhall, looking for more clues that could help them open the door. Approaching the place, they heard female screams asking for help and so Gorim and Daemer broke into Konir’s home, finding his daughter Valaris locked in a room and a small humanoid-like robotic construct speaking in Androffan about repairing everything it encountered, but turning violent to Gorim, who had to take out his crossbow and disable it.
    Now safe, Valaris helped the two PCs search for clues about Konir and the metal door, finding some papers talking about the humanoid construct. She also told them that she has been having strange headaches and dreams since several days.
    Gorim took the construct to his home and spent the next three days trying to repair it, failing twice, but finally managing thanks to the help of Silveron and Joram. The robot restarted with a blank memory and software and called itself Unit X1402, but Gorim renamed it to “Remi 2.0” in honor of his friend.
  • Investigating the False Accusation: Daemer took the chance to investigate more of Garmeth and the Ropefists, learning that Garmeth has a home somewhere in the small warehouse district and he owns the Silverdisk Hall. He also learned of a Ropefist thug found drowned in the river, and when he saw the corpse, he recognized him as the man that planted false evidence on him. The dead thug had rope marks in the wrists, neck, and ankles.
  • Common Headaches: One rumor that the PCs learned was that quite enough citizens have been suffering from strong headaches. Daemer did some diagnostics on Valaris and concluded that the headaches are not caused by poison or illness, but from some sort of external yet intangible effect.
Mysteries and Loose Ends (some more important than others)

1. What are those things mentioned by the skulks that lie beyond the metal door: a big cave with desert sand, four-armed animated skeletons that arose from it, and bizarre things of metal?
2. What are those tracks that Konir mentioned in his journal that led him to discover the caves and do secret expeditions to it?
3. Are there any unusual causes for the headaches that Torch’s population is having? Gorim suspected that the headaches might be caused by the violet flame going out.
4. Why a Ropefist thug was drowned in the river with rope marks in his ankles and wrists?

Awards

XP:
300 xp were given to Daemer and Gorim. An additional 200 xp were given to Daemer and Gorim for investigating the identity of Parda and Gerrol’s corpses.

Treasure:

  • Sef, the skulk leader, gave the following things to the PCs for helping with the gremlins and the ropes:
    • 9 silverdisks (worth 10 gp each) to each PC, except for Gorim and Daemer, which get 11 silverdisks instead.
    • 8 gp and 4 sp to each PC
    • 1 flashlight and 1 battery for Daemer (but Silveron took back his own flashlight)
    • 1 unknown-type grenade for Gorim
  • Gerrol’s body contained some gear, and he has no relatives in Torch, so the gear has no owner. These are: masterwork chain shirt, masterwork thieves’ tools, a masterwork hand crossbow, and 75 gp.
  • For bringing Gerrol’s body, her fianceé Emelia asks her father to fashion a masterwork weapon to each PC, as they choose (this will take some days).

Misc:

  • Bringing Parda’s body to the temple of Brigh earns each PC a +2 circumstance bonus on Persuasion checks made in town (for a week), as word of their good deed remains fresh in the locals’ minds.
  • Valaris offers the PCs free meals and lodging, should they wish, for as long as they are searching for Konir.
  • Dolga and other town councilors give the PCs some papers ordering a discount of 20% for all merchants in Torch while they are looking for Konir. This is also a way to repay the PCs for the mistreatment in the false arrest.
  • If Konir is brought alive, Joram Kester will spend some materials he reserved for resurrecting Konir but for resurrecting any PC that dies.
  • There is 1 replenished conviction to all PCs (mostly for how they dealt with the skulks).

Remember that Dolga is offering 4,000 gp overall for rescuing Konir and 4,000 gp overall for re-igniting the violet flame.

GM Commentaries

Too bad that only two players played in this game session (other 2 excused themselves and 1 had too much technical problems, for which he can ask the GM again for help). Still, we had a good game. The investigations on Daemer’s part were quite nice. But, the players should keep notes on certain details and loose ends, as they forgot them sometimes.

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The Black Hill Caves
Session 2 (February/28/2017)


In-Game Date: 4711, Calistril 16 to Calistril 17

Things Done

The session started with a brief interrogation of the PCs carried out by the dwarven councilor Dolga and other town councilors. Then the PCs were taken to the Weeping Pond accompanied by the merchant Silveron, to enter some caves where Dolga suspected that the missing councilor Konir could be. The PCs searched the caves, encountering vermin and other cave denizens, and finally came upon a group of skulks with whom they struck a bargain in exchange for information on Konir.

Highlights
  • Dolga’s Interrogation: After being apprehended by the Ropefist thugs, the PCs were taken to the town hall where Torch’s four councilors interrogated the PCs to see if they were responsible for Konir’s disappearance. Dolga gauges the knowledge that they have about Konir and also reprimands Barlundi for aiding in the questionable arrest carried out by the Ropefists. She then takes the opportunity to force the PCs to explore some caves where she alone suspects Konir might be, and this might provide evidence for the PCs’ innocence. The rest of the councilors are a bit surprised to see that Dolga seems to have information that nobody else does. Dolga then appoints Silveron Troval to escort the PCs to the Black Hill Caves.
  • Silveron and the Weeping Pond: After spending the night sleeping in offices and lobbies of the town hall, closely watched by guards, the PCs headed for the entrance to the caves near the foul Weeping Pond. Silveron accompanies them and talks more about Konir. Then he tells his guards to wait at a distance and then imparts some instructions and warnings to the PCs about anything they find in the Black Hill Caves. The PCs finally enter the contaminated pond and swim toward the caves.
  • Of Beetles, Slimes, Molds, and Corpses: Inside the damp and musty caves, the PCs battled the usual cave vermin – slimes and giant beetles – before finding the corpses of two explorers that went into the caves as part of previous secret expeditions. They investigated the corpses, one which was killed by freezing brown mold, and decided to take them to the surface for identification and burial.
  • The Skulks’ Bargain: Further into the caves, they encountered a small party of skulks: humanoids from the Darklands with the natural ability to camouflage with the cave rock. They were stranded here for many days and already set up improvised dwellings with bizarre junk – metal panels, wires, consoles – that they took from somewhere in the caves.
    The skulks were desperate to return to the Darklands and struck a bargain with the PCs: if they go and fetch some ropes stolen by some cave gremlins, then the skulks could provide plenty of info besides other goods. The PCs agreed to that, and one of the skulk, Luepel, served as a guide.
  • The Metal Door: In the rooms where they found the skulks, the PCs also found a big sturdy metal door, about ten feet wide, with a strange interface panel on it. Nobody has seen something like that before and the skulks talked about a strange place beyond the door, where they went before a party of humans passed through and sealed the door. The skulks made some rudimentary cave art depicting what they saw beyond the door, but only Gorim noticed this.
  • Pesky Gremlins: In the last rooms of the small cave system, the PCs battled some gremlins and disposed of them quickly, taking back the stolen ropes to the skulks so they could descend to the Darklands.
Mysteries and Loose Ends (some more important than others)

1. Why Dolga kept to herself the secret that there were some caves below Torch and apparently, Konir went there? Why Silveron also maintained some secrecy when escorting the PCs to the caves?
2. Who were the two persons found dead in the caves?
3. What is that big metal door and to where it leads?
4. Who were the team that passed through the door and sealed it behind?

Awards

XP:
800 xp were given to Clarence, Daemer, Eladrion, Gorim, and Remiliano. An additional 100 xp were given to Daemer and Gorim for providing a written background.

Treasure:
For Gorim only: 7 silverdisks and several parts of technological items he found in the cave junk (wires, bolts, a few metal plates, etc.)

Misc:
For Remiliano only: He got one replenished Conviction point due to bargaining with Dolga and providing arguments for the absurdness of the framing paper.

GM Commentaries

This session moved smoother and better than the first. There was some role-playing, quite some exploration, and a couple of combats. Everyone played nice. But, the party forgot to use stealth except at the end of the session: don’t forget next time! :)

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A False Accusation
Session 1 (February/21/2017)


In-Game Date: 4711, Calistril 16

Things Done

We spent the majority of the session solving technical problems with the Roll20 app as well as learning how to use it and then speaking about the campaign, expectations, the rules, etc. Finally, we started the game with an initial combat encounter where the PCs were wrongly arrested.

Highlights
  • Framed and Arrested: Our player characters Gorim, Remiliano, Daemaer, Clarence, and Eladrion were attending their everyday chores in the town of Torch when many Ropefist gang members showed up to arrest them. According to the Ropefists, they were following a bounty and arrest warrant that indicated that the PCs were responsible for the supposed murder of Torch’s beloved councilor Konir Blaine, who went missing 2 days ago.
    The PCs resisted and the Ropefist thugs used force to subdue them. When apprehended, one thug put a paper in Daemaer’s pocket with scribbles speaking of steps to harm the councilor.
    Then the PCs were taken to the town hall for interrogation.
Mysteries and Loose Ends (some more important than others)

1. Why the PCs are being framed for a supposed crime that they did not commit?
2. Who is councilor Konir and why he went missing 2 days ago?
3. There was a man named Garmeth that the Ropefist thugs referred to, and who was in the town hall speaking with other councilors about the arrest. Who is him and why did he participate in the arrest?
4. The town’s important and eponymous violet flame went off 8 days ago. Why?

Awards

XP:
200 xp were given to Gorim, Remiliano, Clarence, and Daemaer

Misc:
The maximum Conviction points were raised by 1 for Gorim, Remiliano, Clarence, and Daemaer, due to their cooperation in creating their characters by way of sharing backgrounds.

GM Commentaries

The session was not the best due to technical problems and so many things discussed before playing. Also, the combat encounter was slow and dull at several times.


The paper that was planted in one of the PCs’ pockets:

False_Plan.png

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