This week there was play! After everyone was stuffed with chilli dogs, we got down to the serious business of continuing our adventures in Dashdorne. Play had ended last time with the collapse of a half-orc, who the party’s resident monk recognised as a monk (she was the only one to notice his clothes) during this week’s session. How did the group rouse the unconscious half-orc? The Druid Tier had half-drowned him by conjuring two gallons of water, which threatened to splash the books and scrolls contained within the library of the mayor they were in.
Donvadok, the half-orc (who they took an age to ask the name of), had basically come all the way from the Admantine Tower ( Elder Scrolls reference, in name only) to the east. According to Donvadok, the tower had suddenly grown in height and had a beam of bright green light projecting out of the top of it, all at the same time of the earthquake. As all this was being discussed and the player characters tried and failed their knowledge rolls, I introduced a player character who had been absent the previous week, Hermione the halfling bard.
Hermione came to the knowledge roll rescue and sang a song about how no one knows anything about the tower, because it has no windows or doors. It’s smooth, dark, impenetrable surface could hold thousands of secrets or none at all, but no one knows because despite Dashdorne slowly being settled over the course of several hundred years – no one has ever found a way in.
It was after the song that everyone noticed that the mayor, Blake Huntfer, had slowly been backing out of the library, whilst suggesting (in not so innocent tones) that the party should head to the tower. Before anyone knew what had happened, the mayor had gone through a huge set of doors and barred them on his side. He’d taken Fuzzlewick, his cat, with him. Everyone was of course irked by the mayor’s suspect behaviour. And with his assistant, Handel, still kicking it back in the library, he suddenly got a barrage of questions about the mayor and the mysterious figure who’d been in the library before Donvadok arrived.
Handel couldn’t explain much, but only that the he knew almost nothing about the shadowy figure they’d seen earlier, who’d been spending a lot of time with the mayor. The mayor’s wife had grown so fed-up of all the mystery, that she’d gone to visit a town to the south of the island. And Handel had tried his darnedest to find out what the mayor and the figure had been discussing, but no matter how close he got, he could never hear what was being said. Leaving the mystery for now, Handel did say it would be for the best if the players and Donvadok headed back to the tower.
Unable to shorten their five day journey the way Donvadok had, his god – Aspu – had opened a portal that brought him part of the way, the party started the long walk east. On their way out of the city, they met Topsy Bellows, a cart pushing wielder of wares who may have been about to try and profiteer from the earthquake by heading into Tolderne. Everyone put their money together to stock up on food and potions before following the main road out.
Once the road began to give way to a rough track, that’s when they realised there was a bit of a problem. The local cemetery had been disturbed by the earthquake and something that was neither dead nor alive was ambling towards the group. Two zombies were heading towards them, not running of course.
Combat went reasonably smoothly, some rolls did critically fail and there were a few moments where it look like people would be bit, but the zombies (which had once been human barbarians) were dispatched after several rounds of play. Yet, it wasn’t clear if the zombies had been awakened due to the earthquake or something else. Once the zombies were very dead again, and the party were thinking of holding up camp a bit further away from the cemetery, they saw a carriage being driven off in the distance, but couldn’t make much of it.
And so this week’s session ended.
The party won’t be reaching the tower too soon. There’s a lot of ground to cover and who knows what the earthquake may have done to the dirt road ahead…