Campaign of the Month: January 2009

Pursuit of Destiny

Dear Tenibo Veinbreaker,

We followed the tracks of the Hunters around the exterior of the floating island, Gnask’s incredible tracking skills allowed us to find a cave entrance that bypassed the traps that were surely set for us.

Docking the Cerulian Hope we made our way back under the city, though this time we were much closer to the surface. At the end of this tunnel we came upon a large chamber of gears, all polished to a mirror shine. At the base of a giant door a small clockwork machine shaped like a four sided pyramid. As we approached, the creature turned to look at us with on mechanical eye and informed us that we were not allowed here and had to leave.

As it eyed us it stopped on Benadrix and asked why he had chosen such an ineffective form, and if he were a Modron he would be more efficient. When the little creature came to me he was amazed at the number of sides I had, and explained how with only four sides he could not begin to do as many complicated tasks as I must be able to perform. He asked what my purpose was, and I informed him that my friends and I must move beyond the door in front of us.

It asked us if we were here to restore order to the chaos, and sensing that he would open the door for us we all agreed that is what we were here for. The small being informed us that it too wished for order to be restored, but with only four sides it did not know how to help. “If only I had six sides, that is my dream.”

The modron, Sides as we have come to call him, opened the door for us. On the other side another large room full of gears greeted us. Two large gears spun on the floor in opposite directions, and in the middle a large pillar was being lowered by the gears. On top of the pillar five of the captive members of the blue mask were bound by chains. Scattered around the room there were some four and six sided modron, they were acting sporadically, and Sides informed us that “they had been touched by the chaos.” Across the room from us one of the Hunters, a female Deva, stood armed with a handcrossbow and a longsword. “I am Isha of the Khar, and you have proven yourselves to be worthy prey.”

Assessing the room, we spring into action. With a rush or movement Benadrix unfolds his wings and sores across the room, bypassing all the modrons and lands next to the Deva. We tell Sides that we need the pillar stopped, to restore order we need to save the people on top. He rushes to a side room and begins to interface with the controls. “This is beyond my protocol, but I will attempt to stop it for you.”

As the rest of us begin to make our way to the pillar trying to find a way to save the captives, the gears pick up in speed spinning twice as fast and dropping the pillar even faster. “Did that help?” Sides called from the control room. The chaos touched modron swarmed us as we tried to reach the pillar. Between the modron and the moving floors we were working hard to keep our footing. Just as we were falling into the rhythm of the floor, able to sidestep as the gears turned, they shook and changed direction. “Perhaps I should have bypassed subroutine 5579-C, rather than disabling it.” Sides said as he heard us shout in dismay.

Benadrix was going toe to toe with the Deva, but with a great shove she pushed him back off the solid floor to the moving gears. At that same moment the outer ring of gears dropped away, falling for miles bouncing off of other gears below. Only his wings saved him, for Benadrix was caught off guard and fell as well. He glided to a small landing below, and let our a howl of rage as he gathered himself to fly back and face the hunter.

Meanwhile Gnask and I had climbed to the top of the pillar and were attempting to free the blue mask clansmen. Just as Gnask had picked a lock freeing the third of the five prisoners, the pillared dropped, and the crushing gears were now too close for comfort. “Clearly accessing the pillar’s directive through he waste system was incorrect but perhaps if I. . .there that should have done it.” As Sides spoke the pillar shook and stopped.

Leaving the locks to Gnask I dropped to the spinning gear below. Across the gap created by the fallen gear Benadrix was hard pressed to ward off the blows of the Hunter. Using the speed of the gears to add to my own, I ran and leapt across the gap, crashing into the hunter hard. When we managed to untangle ourselves, Benadrix and I had the hunter trapped between us.

In a fit of rage Isha swung out to slash me with her sword, the force behind the blow would have been enough to knock me backward into the miles of gears turning below us. Thankfully Benadrix dove between us, his shield raised and took the blow. He was knocked over the edge, but this time he was ready, and his great wings held him aloft. From across the room Celence called to Bahamet, and from the air above Isha a crushing hand of force knocked her back. Staggering to catch her balance the Deva reaches into a small pouch and produces a small ceramic bead, smashing it on the ground the room was filled with a blinding light and when our sight recovered she was gone.

With the slaves free, we paused for a moment to regain our senses. Sides floated over and though he had done almost as much good as harm we showed him the body of one of the deactivated six side Modrons, and Sides was able to transfer his consciousness into that body, increasing his effectiveness by 150%. Guiding us to the next door Sides chattered about how much more he could do.

On the other side of the door another large room waited for us. A golden cage in the back held more prisoners of the Blue Mask, and two large lightning rods were periodically shocking the cage, and the people inside. In front of the cage another Deva stood, surrounded by more Chaos touched Modrons, these with eight and ten sides. “You have passed the first test, and while you may have forced my beloved to disengage but now you face me. I am Basu of the Khar, and I will be your end.” Quick as the lightning flashing behind him, the Deva shot three arrows from his longbow striking Benadrix, Marrek and me.
With a roar of defiance Benadrix filled the room in front of us with flame, these modron were stronger than the previous ones, but the heat of the dragon’s breath was enough to turn their metallic surfaces white hot. Following the burst of flame we all rushed foreword. “I have some understanding of this room,” Sides informed us, “if you can get two people next to the lightning rods I can redirect the rods away from the cage and into them.”

With a glint in his eye Benadrix smiled at me, “Pushed the blasted Deva onto one, I’ll take care of the other.” And he began to make his way through the sea of Modrons ahead of us. Knowing the dragonborn had made up his mind, I charged past the modron to slam my shield into Basu and drive him back a step. He took my charge with the strength and grace of someone who has spent a lifetime fighting and training, shifting with the force of my charge he sprang backwards, unable to escape my blow but using my power to propel him even farther back. From behind him as he leapt Basu threw a net. It’s strong bands grabbed me, small barbs finding hold in the ridges of my armor holding me fast. As he landed the modron swarmed, one of the ten sided ones let loose a blast to of lightning, the bolt arced across all of us except Celence who was far enough back. The burst of lightning combined with the previous fight we were not doing well, more than one of us was bloodied, and it was all Marrek and I could do to keep our feet.

Moving back to my side Benadrix said a quick prayer to Kord and moved again ready to jump into position next to the lightning rod. To our dismay as a lightning struck the cage, an elder prisoner fell dead. Upon seeing this a rage swelled inside of me, and I broke free of the net. Pushing past the modrons I moved next to Basu knocking him back another step.

Gnask moved up beside Marrek, staunching the blood flowing from an open wound, “Hit him again Construct,” he yelled as he supported Marrek. Seeing Marrek taken care of I drove into Basu again getting him another step closer to the rod.
“Finish him 148,” Marrek yelled gaining his feet with the help of Gnask. With a final surge I shoved Basu next to the lightning rod, and Benadrix leapt next to the other one.

“Now Sides, re-aim the lightning.” Celence yelled, and from the top of the rods, the crackling electricity shot out striking both Basu and Benadrix. The force of the blast knocked both men form their feet, and blew the door to the cage open. The Modrons who were attacking us turned upon the clans people as they poured out of the cage.

Basu recovered first, springing back to the top of the cage he aimed his longbow at us. Laughing, “This fight has been everything I have hoped, I offer you a reprieve. Protect your friends, and rest here. I will move to the next room, and my beloved and I will await you there.”

Though the flow of blood had been staunched, Marrek was still weak on his feet. Looking around the room, seeing the rest of us in as bad a state and the panicked prisoners fighting to escape the modron Marrek said “We agree.”

As Gnask grumbled his disapproval, Basu calmly turned and walked through a door in the back of the room. We made quick work of the remaining modrons, remembering to keep one in better shape to have Sides download into. Pointing the Blue Mask members the right direction we sat down to rest. For perhaps the first time since we arrived in the tunnels, we were able to rest fully. The Khar were nothing if not honorable.

Moving together through the door we entered the next room, knowing the two hunters waited there. The room was smaller than the previous two, a mostly empty room with a small control room to one side. Suspended in the back, hanging unconscious was Ash. Bolts of lightning arcing to hit him, snapping his limp frame rigid. One of the Devas began to speak, but seeing Ash strung up so i charged ahead not giving them a moment to gloat. In our previous fights the hunters must have been holding back, for even though I rushed with all my speed Isha moved out of the way as if I were walking. Basu opened with a hard shot, hitting Benadrix in the shoulder of his shield arm, rendering it limp as the arrow blasted a hole through flesh and bone. Calling to Bahamet, Celence hit Isha knocking her prone and dazing the hunter. Following the blow, Celence cried to Bahamet to heal Benadrix, and the bleeding slowed and Benadrix was able to lift his shield again.

With a deep breath Benadrix blew two bursts of flame, one right after the other. The hunters were again fast, but the end of one of the last caught Basu wrapping him in flames. As he ran, flames licking from his cloak, Basu threw another net, this time trapping Benadrix in it’s thick fibers.

Enraged by seeing her love set aflame Isha cast a spell, a great burst of light erupted in the center of the room dazing all of us. When we recovered our sight only Basu was to be seen. Wasting no time I charged him again, meeting my charge Basu swung back and though he hit me hard, I tucked my shoulder under my shield and knocked him prone. As we all moved to surround Basu, Isha appeared attacking us from behind. Though he was still bound by the net Benadrix called a challenge to Isha, and she moved to him sensing him an easy kill. Moving as quickly as I could I dropped into Rain of Steel and called my own challenge to both Basu and Isha pulling them next to me. Coming from behind Marrek hit Basu hard, running his sword through Basu’s shoulder. Basu fell to the ground, and Marrek reached his arm high ready to strike the killing blow.

“Stay your hand,” Isha called. “Spare him and I will wet your friend free, and we can go our separate ways. Do not and I will kill him slowly after I have killed each of you.” Unknown to Isha, Sided had moved to the control room at the start of the fight and had now gained access to free Ash. Marrek struck hard and fast, killing Basu. Isha screamed in anger and could only watch in disbelief while at the same time Ash fell free of his bonds. Overcome with rage Isha tried to rush past me to attack Marrek, but stepping in the way I stuck her down as well.

Moving to Ash we all took a needed break at the base of the stairs.

Comments

...wow. Well done you guys! :D

Dear Tenibo Veinbreaker,
Kiko

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