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Stormbringer episode 13

Page history last edited by PBworks 15 years, 6 months ago

Adventuring with a Duke is a tricky business. For a start he isn’t interested in treasure per se, being more interested in the “historical significance” of stuff than the value of its raw components when melted down. Secondly he expects to be listened to and to be obeyed. And thirdly it means the entire party has to meet certain ethical standards, which puts a real dampener on its womanising, drinking and imitating of bodily functions by means of hand gestures.


Our adventure with a Duke got off to a particularly bad start. Our Duke had employed us to help him explore some ruins of historical significance. We agreed to his terms after hearing that items made of solid gold had been fished from those ruins. Our Duke wanted to depart at dawn. We hadn’t even gone to bed when the sun started to brighten the sky.


Shurly and Lars made for a particularly surly pair of characters as we left town. The barbarians felt strangers enough in this wealthy northern city state, without the added displacement of travelling with a Duke and having to get up early. Our first day’s travel was spent mostly in silence and that was probably for the best.


Lars cheered up by the time evening came around and the party sought shelter in a rough country inn. He shouted the Duke and his companions a few ales and was soon smiling through his moustache at the pretty local lasses. By the time we hit the road on the second day he was chatting away as usual and began to enjoy the fresher air of the countryside.


The second evening was spent at the edge of the Duke’s realm and Lars’ chattiness almost got us into trouble. The Duke, a particularly democratic fellow, encouraged the serfs at this distant outpost to express their views freely and Lars’ contribution to the debate had many suspecting he was an agent of the despised Church of Law.


The third day’s travel took us to the sea and we set up camp near the edge of a cliff. As night fell we noted a strange red glow coming from a cave further down the cliff and noted outcrops of rock which seemed to have been shaped by man. Morning revealed that some of these rocks were indeed shaped stone and the outlines of ancient ruins were observed.


Intrigued by the red light our first place of searching was the cave. We clambered down to this and found that the ledge which formed the entrance to the cave was actually a stone sarcophagi. We walked across this and into the cave and found even more of the stone graves. Some of us opened one or two of these and found items of great wealth which we slipped surreptitiously into our bags. Serge took a jewelled bracelet in the shape of a snake which came to life and attempted to bite him. We smashed the creature before the disapproving eye of the Duke and ceased our thieving.


The cave opened into a second cavern and it was from this that the red light came. A body lay atop a sarcophagus here and in one hand a great red gem gave off a bright and sickly glow. Next to this sarcophagus lay another body, this one a female holding a earthen jug.


The Duke’s bodyguard, Nadaja, reached out to touch the red gem and suddenly the cave disappeared. We found ourselves outside and it was dark. A heavy mist covered the landscape and we could not even tell if we remained on our world. The Duke was nowhere to be seen, but through the mist we could hear a cheery whistling. Lars called in the direction of the whistling and a skittering sound was heard.


We gathered closer together and peered through the fog. The skittering grew closer and all of a sudden a grey man-like creature with a jagged spear appeared atop a giant spider-like thing. The spear-carrier and his beast attacked us and proved to be vicious foes. They fought silently and the mist deadened even the sound of our weapons clashing. It took us some time to bring them down.


Once the battle was over and we had seen to our wounds, we took another look about us. Through the mist we could make out a tower in a walled town and from this a red light shone. At our feet steps led downwards into the earth.


We followed the steps and found ourselves back in the cave we had just been transported from. This time though, the sarcophagi appeared new and no body lay in upon it. A woman was crouched next to the sarcophagus and she was clearly startled to see us. She held a great wound in her side with one hand, and an earthen jug with the other. She muttered incoherently for a while and the best of our medicine could not stop her bleeding. Amongst her mutterings she told us of her love for a man and that the creature we had fought was called a drevan and was one of many that stalked these lands. We could not understand much else of what she said, but we understood that her lover and the fate of her people were somehow bound to the red light we had seen from the far tower. After doing our best to make the woman comfortable, we resolved to make our way there.

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