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Scarred Lands: Over the Gascars

Rating: 3 votes, 5.00 average.
August 8, 2009
Scarred Lands: Over the Gascars
Second Madriday of Madrer, 150 AV

After spending a night in the cave previously owned by the renegade wizards, the group (minus Lavidia) awoke and had one big problem to deal with: where to go from here.

While the Karel attempted to come to grips with the loss of his companion, the elder members of the group discussed where they were going to go from here. There was talk about going north, to head around the Gascar Peaks through Darakeene to the Fouled Forest, but it was argued that brought them too close to Khet. They talked about going south out of the Stricken Forest, and to Hollowfaust, but that brought them too close to the Hornsaw Forest and the minions of Mormo.

Karel, overhearing the name of his home, interjected that they make for Hollowfaust with all haste. As normal, the rest of the group ignored him and continued their conversation.

Eventually they decided to head due west, through the forest and then over the Gascars, taking the most direct route.

So they set out later that morning for their longest trek yet. They marched through the forest in relative silence, as the loss of their companion to an unknown fate settled on them.

On the second day of their travels, they heard the sounds of a battle off in the distance, and gripping their weapons they rushed to see. As they approached the site they saw a lone man swinging a longsword at a group of rotted dogs that howled and leaped at him. Wearing no armor, and dodging the fangs of the hounds while striking out with his blade, the man seemed capable of handling himself, except for that he was outnumbered five to one. As he spun around, swinging his sword, a holy symbol of Corean flashed in the sunlight.

That was the only thing needed to spur Safaria into action, and the rest of the company followed suit. Together they were able to make short work of the ghoul hounds, and then they turned to the swordsman.

He introduced himself as a wandering monk of Corean, named Mao, affiliated with the Order of Gold from the Gleaming Valley. After a few minutes of conversation, and a spark of camradarie between Mao and Safaria, they joined forces and absorbed Mao into their group, and continued their travels.

It wasnít until later that night as they slept, with Halder on watch, that they encountered any more difficulties. As Halder sat by the fire, gazing up at Belsamethís moon and pondering the dark goddessí plans for his life, two screeching wyverns dropped out of the dark sky and attacked them.

Halder roused the group with a yell and they sprang into battle. It was short, but bloody as the wyverns nastily barbed tail swung in attempting to poison the battling warriors to no avail. They made short work of the pseudo-dragonlike creatures and went back to sleep. But not before Karel exercised his mundane necromantic talents and extracted some of the poison.

Two days later, as they were reaching the edge of the forest, Safaria and Halder who lead the group, blundered into a large spiderweb, followed by most of their party. As they noticed their predicament and attempted to free themselves, the owner of the web, an Ettercap, scuttled out from a dense group of trees.

Thanks to the spiritual strength of Mao, and the quick thinking of the two wizards, they were able to dispatch the spider creature without too much effort.

They reached the edge of the forest and saw the Gascars looming before them.

After camping at the foot of the mountains, they made their way up into the peaks, passing first through the foothills and smaller mountains.

As they wandered westward, through the winding mountainous paths, a creature none of them had seen topped a rise and began lumbering toward them. As they grabbed their weapons and brought spells to their lips, while moving into position to fend off an attack, the creature rushed at them, and breathed a line of swirling sand at Karel.

They lost sight of the necromancer as a swirling vortex of sand enveloped him, and when it all cascaded down they saw a young man in his early 20s, and not the thin frail form of their much younger companion. The only noticeable similarity was that his much larger frame was bulging out of the same clothes that Karel had been wearing.

Realizing that they had more immediate threats than attempting to figure out what had happened to Karel, the group made a coordinated attack and made short work of the creature, which then crumbled into a pile of sand.

As they converged on the confused looking young man who wore the clothes of their companion, and bombarded him with questions about where Karel was, it became obvious that the young man was Karel. He had been aged by the attack of the creature.

They managed to piece together clothes that would fit Karelís aged frame, and then they continued on.

A few days later as they were walking, and making their way higher up into the colder reaches of the peaks, Pheonix was making a comment about wanting a fur cloak to keep warm, when he spied a pile of furs and hides by the side of the path. With a grin at the irony, he approached the pile followed closely by the rest of the group.

It was good fortune that the rest of the party was close by as the pile of hides leaped from the ground and ambled over, latching on to Pheonix with the teeth of the creatures. Reeling from the surprise of an ambulatory pile of dead animal hides, the group quickly rushed to the attack, noticing that their weapons had a diminished effect on the creature, and it seemed to shrug off nearly all the magic that the wizards hurled at it.

After a long grueling battle, the creature was slain and Halder walked among the group offering Madrielís blessing and the healing that came with it to everyone. Pheonix walked over in a huff, and pulled the remains of the creature around his shoulders and wore it as a cloak and a trophy.

In the next few days they descended from the frigid tops of the mountains, encountering a group of Blade Beasts. They used their knowledge from the previous encounter they had with these cat-like creatures, and were able to acquire additional weaponry once the creatures were destroyed.

As they entered the foothills at the western foot of the mountains, the Fouled Forest in sight in the distance, they ran afoul of one of Mormoís abominations. A Low Gorgon hissed and drooled its acidic saliva as it rushed at them from across a hill.

It was a bloody battle as the creature seemed to resist the spells of the wizards. But the blades of Safaria and Mao proved more than effective, and Pheonix scored a well placed hit that nearly felled the creature, but allowed an opening for one of his other companions to slay the foul beast.

As they recovered from the encounter with the spawn of Mormo, they reached the edge of the Fouled Forest and decided to make camp, in order that they might be at their best to meet the Old Sage.

Sorry it's taken awhile, but I'm feeling strangely energized lately. So expect me to post more in the next week. As always, comments are welcome!
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Updated 09-13-2009 at 11:10 PM by RMajere (Got the dates wrong...)

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