Virgin DM Monologues: A Traitor Turned In, A Nightmare Revisited

Welcome to the recap of the 25th session of my Eberron campaign, which took place on Tuesday, September 14th, 2010. When we last saw the party, they had captured Toven d’Cannith and killed the traitor Evan. After looting his corpse of valuable items (Cyd: “Evan would want it this way.“), Beatdown carries the unconscious Toven to Lady Elaydren’s townhouse.

She balks at accepting him herself as it would reveal her lack of protection for the schemas to Merrix. All he knew was that she was hiring a group of adventurers to retrieve the final schema, not that they’d been stolen by the Emerald Claw.  Beatdown points out that she could pin everything on Toven, especially since they had the forged letter, and since she could also deliver the traitor to Merrix, it should clean up the matter nicely. She’s nervous, but agrees that it’s probably the best idea.

Jelly explains that the schemas and creation pattern, when put together, brought forth a malevolent entity named Xulo that took the body of a giant warforged and tried to kill them. Jelly says that she and Ulvein were able to perform a ritual that calmed the energy a bit, but it would wear off in a few days.  Lady Elaydren assures them that she’s locking the schemas in her safe tonight and delivering the schemas herself to Merrix in the morning.  Since he’s a powerful artificer, he should be well equipped to handle it.

Beatdown asks if meeting with Merrix would be possible, but Elaydren says he’s not really the type to meet with people. She’d ask, but no promises.  She does promise that Merrix will deliver some sort of payment for handling the Toven situation and to expect news about that shortly. She pays the party the remainder of the money owed to them and wishes them well.

Jelly is dying for a bath, since she hasn’t had one since they were in Stormreach, so the party returns to their apartment, which has been empty for several weeks. Since their magical door didn’t notify them of any visitors, the place looks exactly as they left it, including some food Brick probably left out. They’d yell at Brick, but he’s gone to drop Ulvein off at a language immersion school to learn Khorvaire Common and brush up on how Giant is spoken on this continent.

There’s a knock at the door. Beatdown answers it, shoulderbow at the ready.  A small courier boy hands him an envelope and runs away. (Beatdown: “At least I didn’t have to tip.”)  It is a note from Sako, the wizard who was the roommate of Brinn, the wizard who died researching the book.

I have found some of Brinn’s notes regarding visions
he had while in possession of the pages of the book.
Please meet me at my residence tonight and
I will share what I have found. – Sako

The party decides to check in with their employer, Kava Velderan at Globe Information Agency first. Her assistant ushers them into her back office immediately, where she is quite pleased to see them. She introduces them to Jun, a changeling dressed in an impeccable Victorian-esque suit complete with fluffy tie. A new member of the team, she explains, Jun is a sociologist who will be of great help getting into the minds of those House Tharashk wishes to study or apprehend.  He’s also a lightning sorcerer… and small bolts of lightning seem to arc across his body at odd moments.

Jun explains that his hobby is studying those of other races so he can teach other changelings how better to emulate them and interact with them in society.

(This is the new PC for Evan’s player. Of course, the party has questions regarding his intentions.)

Jun: “I’m looking forward to studying you all.”

Beatdown: “Will you betray us?”

Jun: “Only if you get uninteresting to study…”

Kava laughs at the fact that they were so bored in Stormreach that they had to take a job from Kurn.  She rolls her eyes.  “All he deals with there are pirates and miscreants. At least in Sharn, we get murders. Well, he has murders too, but not good murders. Well, not GOOD murders, but interesting ones.”

Beatdown explains they just picked up the job to kill time while waiting for their ride back to Khorvaire. He also summarizes the entirety of Bruce Cordell‘s adventure module, Grasp of the Emerald Claw, thusly: “We saved the world earlier. There was a big warforged, and a smaller, jerkier warforged, and a fake vampire.” He mentions that he also won an arm wrestling contest in Stormreach. Very important.

Kava’s new job for the PCs is to act as travel companions and bodyguards to the famous opera singer Lady Tyasha d’Phiarlan. She is traveling to the Five Demesnes (di-MAYNs) to speak to the students at each. She leaves in a week for the Demesne of Motion in Korth.

As much as I’d like to keep you here,” Kava sighs, “You’ve proven more… durable than my other employees, so I trust you to keep her safe on her travels. She is still quite shaken after that incident a few months back and is paying handsomely for your services… you could come back to Sharn with a piece of armor or magic baubles from every corner of Khorvaire by the time she’s done with you! At any rate, you have a week to get your affairs in order before getting on the lightning rail with Lady Tyasha.

The party then goes to Sako & Brinn’s apartment. A very petite Khoravar woman with jet black hair, ice blue eyes and a tiny nose answers the door. When they ask if Sako is home, she turns and says, “Honeeeeey! You have visitors!” Sako comes and invites them in. He’s just finishing dinner and the slight half-elf woman sits in his lap and gleefully feeds him his meal. When he’s done eating, she nuzzles and kisses his neck. In between kisses, she introduces herself as Elyse. Sako eventually sends her off to bed so he can discuss the visions Brinn had with the PCs.

Sako had found Brinn’s diary tucked under the floorboards in his old room. In it, Brinn details a recurring gruesome nightmare. He is glad to give the PCs the diary in hopes that it will help them learn more about the mysterious book, so that Brinn’s death would not be in vain.

The PCs chat with Sako a bit and then go home, where Jun reads the diary aloud, starting at the morning after the first nightmare.  In it, there is an explosion, a blast of white light and pieces of flesh strewn everywhere. Brinn is covered in blood, guts, entrails. The stench of it overpowers him and he wakes up and vomits. The nightmare repeats each night. He begins to think it’s related to the Day of Mourning, after all, it was said the skies burned brightly the day Cyre was destroyed.

He uses some magical means of achieving more lucid dreams and as the days go on, Brinn begins to see a bit better in the dream, to pierce the bright light.  The first thing he notices is that those around him are wearing the armor of the Karrnathi army. About a week later, he notices that those around him are undead soldiers. This is an excellent clue, but the stench of the bodies in the dream becomes even more realistic. Brinn refuses to eat anything after noon.

Finally, Brinn manages to see beyond the undead around him to see a lightning rail line and a banner. He can’t see enough to read it, but he describes the emblem on it as best as he can. Beatdown recognizes it as Fort Zombie, on the Karrnath border. They wonder if this is a historical event, but Cyd shakes his head. There were no such accounts at Fort Zombie during the war, at least not that were documented.  Is this a bit of the prophecy, or just the dreams of a crazy man?

It’s late, so the party retires to their rooms. (Jun is unimpressed with their middle-class dwelling.) In the morning, a note from Merrix d’Cannith arrives. It’s delivered by a warforged named 42. He holds the paper out between his outstretched hands and reads it aloud:

Friends, I am most appreciative for the matter
that you brought to the attention of my house.
I would be equally appreciative if you did not
speak of it to anyone. As payment for your continued
silence, please accompany 42 to our storehouse
where you may select from our many fine magical items.
Yours, Merrix d’Cannith

42 then shoves the piece of paper into his mouth. A small flame appears where a tongue would be and the paper burns. 42 turns his head to the side, blows the smoke into a perfect ring, and looks back at the party. “Follow me.”  They accompany him to a Cannith enclave, where they are able to choose a suitable payment for their service in bringing Toven to justice.

Later that day, the book in Cyd’s bag begins to get warm again. Cyd removes it to keep it from setting his belongings alight, and the book flips itself open to its first page.  A map begins to appear… it’s a simple map of Khorvaire in black ink… with a big red X over Karrnath.

…Stay tuned every Tuesday on Twitter and here on the blog for campaign updates!

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Since 2008, E. Foley of Geek’s Dream Girl has been helping geeks from around the world find love. She writes amazing online dating profiles for her fellow geeks and guides them through the perilous waters of the dating scene and out the other side. She's totally proud to report that she's even caused a couple geek weddings! She lives in Maryland with DaveTheGame, her adorable cats, Mr. Peanut & Don Juan, and Titania, Queen of the Cocker Spaniels. (Email e, or follow @geeksdreamgirl on Twitter.)

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