Big City Knights

Adventurers on the Orien Express
a tagline you want?

Four strangers met on the Orien Express, bound south for Sharn. During the trip they pass the time by introducing themselves, each an adventurer by trade: Jack, Guido, Corlath and Khan.

Several hundred miles south of Wroat the rail made an unscheduled stop. As the passengers milled about wondering what the cause was, a small group of riders approached the rail on horseback out of the east.

Two of the riders entered one of the rail-cars, while two more waited outside. The four adventurers, seeing the fear in the group of commoners riding the rail, approached the waiting riders to inquire their business, when suddenly one of the riders attacked!

The adventurers were forced to kill the man in self-defense, and then Khan decided to end the issue by engaging the attacker’s companion as well. He immediately lodged several arrows in the young man, severely wounding him. Corlath and Jack quickly stopped the dandified elven ranger’s activity and the dwarven cleric sent the other rider, now suitably terrified, away. The young man ran until out of sight and the horses he had been holding scattered.

Corlath and the other shadowy dwarf followed the other two mysterious riders into the lightning-railcar to investigate. The battle-scarred warforged fighter lumbered after them, while the ranger decided to relax in the fresh air sipping his wine while the others made up their mind about the nature of the danger and whether they were going to start fighting the bandits or continue pussy-footing around.

Corlath, Guido and Jack walked in on a confrontation occurring between two dark figures and a small passenger …

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Excess Baggage
a halfling of questionable veracity

The 4 adventurers continued their investigation of the [[adventurers-on-the-orien-express|bandit attack on the Orien Express]] while heading toward Sharn several hundred miles south from Wroat. Upon entering “Car 6” they discovered a halfling being accosted by several persons, apparently bandits (1 male half-orc, 1 female half-orc).

Guido bravely advanced upon the two attackers brandishing his waraxe (which he had no proficiency with… DC10… Success! he has the axe right-side up!), while Corlath and Jack raced around the outside of the rail-car to the far-end. Upon reaching the far end of “Car 6”, Corlath discovered a third, previously unseen bandit waiting outside the rail-car. However, the bandits seemed uninterested in any further confrontation, stealing a cloth-wrapped object from the mortally wounded halfling they quickly withdrew through the adjacent baggage car.

Guido and Corlath quickly saw to the wounds of the injured halfling, saving his life. The halfling introduced himself as Jordit Flathill and declared that he had no idea why the evil, dastardly bandits would attack him (unprovoked!!) and steal his minor, worthless family heirloom, a small ceramic plate left to him by his Great-Aunt Wendy in Wroat. After thanking the group, Jordit Flathill gives his contact information in Sharn in case the group finds or hears anything and then heads off to file a complaint with the Conductors.

The four decide to approach the front of the Express to see what the initial cause of the stoppage was. They see the crew of the Express working to clear several large trees from the rail track. Khan determines the trees were obviously dragged into position. While Corlath and Guido inform the Railmaster of the events at “Car 6”, Khan makes a “contact” with a cute female, half-elf conductor named Lyndarra Illianim while she is engaged in directing porters in clearing the debris.

Eventually the trees are cleared, the bandits dead bodies are searched and with the express thanks (aha! a pun!) of the Railmaster, Fellig Redson the four return to their car as the Orien Express begins its journey to the City of Towers.

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The Bloody Bridge

As the Orien Express continued on towards Sharn, the adventurers were summoned to speak to Railmaster Fellig Redbeard. Railmaster Redbeard thanked the group for the actions during the bandit attack, and then provided them with a calling card to contact his brother in Sharn if they were interested in “that adventuring lifestyle”. The Railmaster described his brother as Jonas Redbeard, a Master Digger in the Diggers Union – an type of adventurers guild, and suggested the party call on him at the 75th floor of Kelsa Spire if they were interested in work.

After reaching Sharn, the group decided to stay together as only Guido had been to Sharn previously. Guido took the party to a tavern he had frequented, Maces Crossing, a small narrow bar at the corner of Mace Street and the Porter’s Way. There the party got some refreshments and relaxed before heading off to call upon Jonas Redbeard.

While relaxing at the inn, Jem, daughter of the barkeep chatted with Khan as he “pumped” her for information. Unfortunately she turned out to be of limited intelligence and was not able to provide much information.

On the way to look up Jonas and introduce themselves with Fellig’s introduction card, the party interrupted a mugging on a sky-bridge over looking the city. They were too late to stop the warforged assassin from killing his victim but prevented him from completing his mission, as upon their arrival he quickly disappeared over the edge of the bridge. As they investigated the body on the bridge they discovered that the man, Content Not Found: Bonal, was a Provost at the nearby Morgrave University, apparently specializing in early Galifar history.

Before they could learn much more, the assassin climbed back on to the bridge and attacked!

His initial attack almost killed poor Guido, but after seeing the presence of a warforged in the party, the assassin screamed in rage and in a mighty fury attacked Jack Hammer instead! Screaming insults like “Traitor!” and “Flesh-lover!” the assassin hurled itself at Jack and they fought a close battle, but ultimately Jack prevailed.

Of course all during this fight the citizens of the affluent tower were calling for the City Watch, and the Watch soon arrived. Fearing that party were the perpetrators, the Sergeant, Dolom Silverhelm, detained them until he could question them fully.

After being satisfied that they were but innocent bystanders Dolom released the party. On leaving the scene, Corlath was approached by hooded and cloaked figure that suggested they could find out more about their attacker and possibly a lucrative job if they met his employer in the morning.

Tired, weary and soaked by the heavy spring rainfall, the adventurers took refuge in a nearby tavern/inn, the Sleepy Dragon. In the morning the group decided to meet the mysterious employer.

Upon entering the designated tavern, the Broken Anvil – a House Ghollandha inn, they were quickly ushered to a large table with pitchers of wine and ale. Seated at the table was a beautiful human woman, dressed in fine dress and robes. She introduced herself as Lady Elaydren d’Vown of House Cannith. Elaydren explained who Content Not Found: bonal was and what work he was doing for her – Bonal was doing research to find the location of a long-lost family artifact, believed lost in a very old, secret creation forge in the bowels of a tower in Sharn. He had located the supposed location of the forge and was relaying the information to Elaydren when he was murdered. Elaydren then Laid out on the table a strange journal…

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East 213-b Valve Cluster
That tunnel has WHAT in it?!?

Led by Skakan, a hired guide to the lower levels, the party comes to the East 213-b Valve Cluster. The location indicated as the most likely entrance to the lost creation forge.

As the party descends the slime filled stairs into the main valve room, a mysterious and threatening warforged emerges from the shadows, demanding the group hand over the Journal of Bonas Geldem or die. The party declines this offer and battle ensues.

As the battle begins, a pair feral shifters join combat on the side of the warforged, charging into battle. The fight rages fiercly as the large valves of the sewer system open and close, disgorging hundreds of gallons of sewage at time. Each burst of sewage threatens to wash the combatants away as they struggle in the muck. The band of stalwart heroes manage to overcome their adversaries, but not before the cleric, Corlath Winespitter is gravely wounded. The warforged Jack battles the opposing “clanker” rogue, while it spits insults and dire threats of retribution at Jack for being a “Flesh-lover” and a “traitor”. Guido manages to pull Corlath from the filth and stop his bleeding.

With one member of their band severely injured, the party attempts to return to the upper levels of the tower for help. Fortunately, the goblin Skakan has remained nearby and is able to guide them to safety. Upon reaching a small clinic in the lower levels, Corlath is healed.

The party returns to the Valve Cluster with Skakan in tow. A brief search on the other side of the valve cluster reveals an ancient door, marked with the archaic symbol of House Cannith. Holding Bonal’s journal to the door the group is pleased to discover that the door responds as expected and opens to admit them passage into the darknees beyond…

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Nocturnal Feeding Habits of Subterranean Insect Populations
Get it OFF!! GETITOFF! GETITOFF! GETITOFF!

The heroes peered into the darkness of the deep shaft behind the ancient portal. What treasure waited beyond?

After carefully suspending a rope, they began their descent in to the shaft. As Corlath and Khan began their slow climb into the depths, the ancient pipe holding the rope broke free and dropped the rope several feet! Corlath and Khan were knocked loose of their grip and plunged downward… Fortunately the bottom of the shaft quickly sloped away and the two adventurers were bruised, but mostly unhurt. After assuring the connection of the rope, the rest of the party descended without incident into the tunnel below.

After traveling a short distance down the old access pipe crawling with insect life of the ancient undergound city, the heroes came upon an opening into a large dark chamber. They dropped carefully into what must have once been a large grand hall, deep below Dorasharn Tower, now forgotten and crumbling.

Gathering their courage the group began to pick their way through the rubble the old hall, when Khan noticed that constant background noise of the chamber, the low thrum of sewer pipes, the chuff of air tunnels, had suddenly changed. A loud, insistent buzzing had arisen as the party moved away from the access pipe. Peering into the darkness the heroes were suddenly engulfed in a large black carpet of chittering, hungry Black Beetles! The swarm of beetles, drawn by the sudden arrival of large amounts of succulent flesh into their territory, was covering the party, making movement, sight, even breathing difficult. Small enough to bypass armor, the marauding bugs were trying to eat the heroes alive!

Quickly the group tried to fall back from the swarm but were unable to avoid it. Pulling on his knowledge of wild animals, Khan warned the group that weapons would be useless against the deadly swarm. Only fire or flight could save their lives. Realizing the torches and oil could be turned against this threat the group decided to stand and fight.

After quickly pulling out torches and flasks of oil, the group danced away from the hungry swarm as Guido d’Harkonnen flung chunks of rations into the swarm, attempting to slow it’s advance. During several attempts to douse the swarm with flaming oil, Corlath was injured repeatedly by the swarm as Jack swung his torch through the mass, in a frenzy to roast as many bugs as possible.

After only a moment, the group came together, a plan formed, and the bugs were defeated as a trap of an large pool of oil was laid and the bugs were led onto it, then Khan managed to light the inferno just as the main mass of creatures flowed across, burning them to ash and dispersing the cloud of hungry insects!

After taking a moment to recover the party prepared to explore the rest of the hall, this sudden threat vanquished.

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Pre-Modern Architecture of the Early Tower Period: 101
Here, Boy! Sit. NO, SIT! I SAID S..ARRGGHH!MYARMMYARM

As the adventurers explored the ancient underground chamber, they were attacked by two Horrid Rats, jumping on the fresh meat from ledges high in the darkness. Fortunately Jack was able to easily clobber the dangerous creatures into submission.

As they continued their exploration they found a large ornate building that Corlath was able to identify as an abandoned temple to Onatar, one of the Sovereign Host, god of the forge. The group took shelter inside briefly. Searching the temple, they came upon a cracked font buried in the rubble of the ancient temple. Although the rest of the building was covered in the dust and debris of 1000 years of disuse, the small amount of liquid in the font is remarkable clean looking. The men decided to store the liquid in a flask for later. Continuing their exploration of the cavern, the group soon discovered what appeared to be the destination of their quest… a large building with sealed doors decorated with the ancient symbol of House Cannith. Examining the building, the adventurers are dismayed to see their way is barred by solid adamantine doors, and a lock that is to complex to bypass. However the years of disuse have taken their toll on the building. Guido Harkonnen’s keen dwarven eyes notice that the blocks of the building are not made from the same stone of the cavern, and soon notices that there is some mixed rubble laying around the perimiter of the walls. Quickly determining that there must have been a cave-in atop the structure they scale the walls and find a large hole in the roof. As the group examined the interior of the biulding they soon noticed to large metal dogs that appear to be guarding the interior. Guido and Jack decided to enter the building despite the guards. As Guido is slowly lowered into the forge, the metal dogs don’t react. Seeing the ease of Guido’s entry, Jack lowered himself into the building and dropped to the floor.

As soon as Jack’s feet touched the floor, however, he was charged by both of the guardians. Jack fought desparately to fend off the dogs, but was unable to hold them off. Attempting to get away, he climbed the rope to the roof, but slipped from the rope before reaching safety. Falling to the floor, the warforged warrior was knocked unconscious.

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How Much for those Doggies in the Window?
... and I'll take the Warforged chew-toy, aslo!

Jack lays leaking, on the rubble, inert from the impact of his fall.

Fortunately, Guido appeared to be safe from the attention of the ancient guardians, and was able to roam about the chamber in relative safety. After tying a rope around Jack so the others could haul the warforged warrior to safety, Guido looks for a way to bypass the iron defenders.

After an extensive study of the doors blocking the entrance to the forge, Guido was able to figure out the mechanism of the lock.

The adventurers prepared to open the doors. First though, Corlath devised a barricade to prevent the doors from opening all the way. He hammered pitons into the stone in front of the doors, and piled some rocks in an effort to prevent the doors from fully opening. A small opening would be left that the explorer could fire into, but would not let the Iron Defenders out of the Foundry.

After making their preparations, the doors were unocked and opened but the Iron Defenders did not react. After they are shot at by Corlath hiding behind the door, though, they burst into action. The two beasts slammed into the large adamantine doors, attempting to get out of the trap that has been created. BAM! The door to the left holds! BLAM! CRUNCH! The door to the right is slammed into by a Defender moving at full speed, pitons, rocks and Corlath are all knocked flying.

Arrows and bolts flashed through the air, striking one of the constructs. As the things turned to attack Corlath, a shadowy figure emerged from the darkness, directing arcane energy at the Iron Defender that had escaped from the Forge. Using the distraction to their benefit, Jack and Guido struggled to haul Corlath off the ground and back up to the safety of the roof as a construct tried to snatch him out of the air. Nearly losing his foot, he is pulled to safety.

Khan took his chance as the gleaming construct was distracted. He carefully aimed and planted a shaft through the top of the creatures head, destroying it.

As the crew began to plan for handling the second metallic guard, it suddenly bolted from the Forge and quickly dashed out of sight around the side of the building. Having chased the thing along the parapet above, Jack reached the rear of the build just in time to peer over the edge.

Leaning over the edge of the stone parapets to looking down, Jack was startled by the sight of the ancient iron construct scaling the wall to the roof! The glowing red eyes were over half-way up the wall, and before Jack could react it had reached the roof.

With a mighty blow, Jack tried to knock it loose as it clambered over the rough stone, but swung wide and teetered precariously near the edge. Sensing his companions danger, Corlath charged in to distract the dangerous foe. A few seconds of clashing steel later, the Defender was crushed into inoperability by the combined assault of the warforged fighter and dwarven cleric.

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New Friends, New Enemies

The shadowy figure cried out, “BEWARE! The danger is not yet passed!”

The adventurers were surprised by two flaming bolts whistling out of the darkness of the cavern beyond, narrowly missing the figure as it zig-zagged over to the cover of a pile of rubble. “There’s two more hiding in the shadows!”, he shouted.

... The bad guys shouted some stuff.

The shadowy figure tried to dodge into the Forge, diving into the quickly narrowing gap as the doors were about to be closed.

The two unkown assailants chased after the figure, trying to prevent the barricading of the door, but as the larger warforged bandit charged in, the mysterious stranger rolled onto his back… BZZZZZZT!!! A BLAZE of colored energy sprang from his outstretched hands, knocking the warrior back in stunned silence. Siezing the opportunity, the rest of the group charged out of the Forge and into battle.

The battle however was short and deadly for the two warforged assailants, stunned and blind, the leader could only stand helpless as his companion was slaughtered. And soon, though he tried to escape, he was conquered as well.

In the aftermath, the new figure is introduced as Mannix. During his introduction another figure emerged from the shadows, the goblin merchant Ska’kan, vouching for Mannix’s integrity and explaining that he brought the mage down to warn the group of the impending ambush by the two warforged assassins!

The party, satisfied that no further danger was at hand, turned it’s attention on the forge. Deducing that the crystal rods would be the key to finding the schema, they inspected the forge and discovered three slots with shapes matching the rods. Carefully insreting the rods into the slots, Khan is able to access the forge vault, where the schema is uncovered.

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A Call for Help

Having successfully fulfilled their duties by recovering the lost schema, the group is paid by Lady Elaydren. They take some R&R and go shopping.

Some inquiries are made with the Diggers Union to set up an appointment with Jonas Redbeard.

Lady Elaydren also arranges with the group to leave a message if any new work opportunities should arise. Several days pass and then the group stops by the message station to check on any word form Elaydren, only to find the message station has recently been ransacked by unknown bandits.

As they make their way back to the inn and giant owl swoops in and delivers a re hastily scrawled message plea for help from Elaydren, she is being stalked by unknown assailants and is in deperate need of the groups help.

They quickly make their way to the Broken Anvil to meet with Elaydren. They find her there dressed in muddy clothes and looking very scared and harried. She gives them some supplies and requests that they travel to Rhukaan Draal, in Darguun, to find help from a man named Failin. Failin will be able to take them to Rose Quarry, where there might be information about the location of a hidden House Cannith workshop that holds another schema.

Elaydren urges them to leave promptly as whoever is attempting to capture her is probably aware that they have been working together on collecting the schema. With that she quickly makes her exit, telling the party she will find them and contact at a later date.

Only moments after Elaydren makes her exit the tavern is invaded by a large Warforged and several kobolds. A brief fight ensues in which the kobolds all die, but the warforged is captured and bound.

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Guido’s Excellent Adventure
... or "How fast can a dwarf run?"

Having successfully captured the warforged leader of the bandits attempting to capture Lady Elaydren, the majority of the party elects to call the guard and then remain at a distance from the Broken Anvil while the City Watch is called. The City Watch is known to be somewhat corrupt in this dura of Sharn.

Guido elects to stay behind and interact with the Watch and explain what happened.

As the Watch arrives the Captain orders the bandit taken into custody and also attempts to arrest Guido. He offers to let the dwarf report in on his own at a later date if Guido will pay a “fine” of 10gp. Guido becomes offended by this suggestion and then brandishes his axe, threatening the Captain and his guards.

The Captain is not amused and orders Guido to stand down and be arrested.

Guido runs away. During his flight he makes several attempts to wound and/or kill members of the watch that are attempting to arrest him.

Guido fails to escape from the City Watch.

The rest of the party makes preparations to leave Sharn and begin their travel to Rhukaan Draal.

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