Keep on the Shadowfell Campaign – session 2
The heroes set out to return to Winterhaven and found a well armed kobold ambush awaiting them. The dragonborn paladin heard their leader issuing orders to “get the mirror, kill the rest!” as combat began.
In a change to the written encounter, due to the larger party size and incase people knew the original adventure, I used a Kobold Wild Mage supported by 4 Dragonshields and 2 Quickblades. The unpredictability of the Mage’s attack effects was fun and when he hit a pc I got them to roll the d4 to decide what form the energy bolt took. I think the only one that never came up was the fire bolt.
The paladin became heaily bloodied holding the road until allies assisted and our goliath’s powers teleported him into the thick of it, soon beoming the centre of attention for a pair of dragonshields and the mage, and becoming equally battered and bruised.
The genasi warlord tried to help out but caused the kobold caster to randomly teleport as the elementalist caused the ground to erupt under the goliath and his foes. It began to look bad as the goliath finally succumbed to his wounds, and looked even worse once the sentinal and his bear defeated the wild mage, triggering its explosive demise and causing enough damage to kill the goliath and the bear!
The remaining kobolds were mopped up quickly and the heroes gathered their fallen comrade and continued on to Winterhaven. They got the Temple of Avandra to raise the goliath, at which point he bartered the rituals fee in exchange of performing a serice for the temple – recovering a holy artifact in the form of the sword of Sir Keegan, known to be lost in the tunnels below the nearby ruined keep. The heroes then retired, taking advantage of the offered hospitality of the dwarven archeologist they had rescued. As they unpacked their wagon they found the mirror the kobolds had been after, the dwarf knew nothing of it and upon examination the elementalist discerned it had some sort of funtion to aid in a portal ritual.
Next day they went to Bairwins Trading Post to sell the kobolds equipment and restock. Again I had added an additional plot thread not in the original and as the sentinal’s passive insight noticed the rotund trader acting shifty our erstwhile elven rogue blurted out “we know what your up to, you may as well come clean” with an astonishing good bluff roll. The traders response was more astonishing as he suddenly broke down to a gibbering wreck “its not my fault, they made me do it, if your quick you’ll catch them in the basement!” as he gestured to a descending spiral staircase.
As they reached the bottom they could see dim purple light in a chamber beyond. The tiefling snuck forward discovering what appeared to be a shrine to Orcus. Unfortunately it wasn’t empty as a quartet of pale humanoids with swords and a trio of floating faceless capes awaited within. Offended by the shrine the paladin strode forth to be attacked by one of the capes as it materialised a large black scythe in its hands, its fellows following suit.
The heroes become bottle-necked as it became evident that the carpeted aisle between the pews was causing them to struggle to hit their enemies. As the majority of the party pressed forward the tiefling ascended the stairs only to find that Bairwin the trader had closed and locked the door.
The paladin quickly became bloodied and in an effort to tackle the enemies surrounding her, the elementalist once again used his erupting earth trick, quickly followed by his action point and repeating the attack. On the plus side he did take out a couple of their foes and damage the cursed carpet enough to remove its effects, on the negative side he also managed to kill the paladin (taking her past negative bloodied).
This did allow the remaining heroes to push forward into the chamber, and the genasi warlord struck a sunrod causing the remaining dark servants to suffer in its brightness.
Once all the enemies lay at their feet, the tiefling discovered a hidden cache within the altar that contained a trio of golden statuettes dedicated to Orcus, and the elf revealed the presence of a hidden doorway but couldnt find its trigger. The goliath showed him the effectiveness of his maul as an improvised key, smashing the door apart to reveal a small chamber beyond with some shelves and a chest. The elf rushed to the chest and confident that it hid no traps flipped the lid open to reveal many coins. He eagerly reached forward, and then even quicker pulled his hand away as a sharp blade scythed across the opening. After disabling the trap he recovered the coins.
On the shelving they discovered several books concering the worship of Orcus along with a ritual book containing Comprehend Languages and a note to Bairwin from Kalarel which confirmed the traders affiliation with the cultists. Hidden at the back was a beautifully crafted longsword with the crossguard decorated to resembling a rising sun. The elementalist identified it as a Sunblade.
Returning topside it became apparent that the trader had fled, and upon checking with the gate guards it was confirmed that he had left the town heading northward. The heroes took their fallen paladin to the temple and in exchange for the gold statuettes they performed a raise dead ritual once more (they would then destroy the items dedicated to foul Orcus and reuse the gold). The party then met with Lord Padraig and showed him the evidence regards the trader and cultist presence right under his nose. He appologised for his earlier disbelief and offered to reward the heroes if they were able to destroy this cult and its leader Kalarel. As reward for exposing the trader and dealing with the shrine he gave the heroes a pair of Potions of Healing, with the words “you’ll probably need them”.
And that is where we left our erstwhile heroes as they prepare to leave Winterhaven once more, this time to head towards the suspected kobold lair at the waterfall of Rourke’s Drop and their mysterious leader, the “fat one”.