Post Greyhawk Wars: 585 CY

6th of Sunsebb 586 CY

Another cold but clear day
Deep in the Suss Forest: east of the Jewel river, just west of the Wild Coast, and just north of the Pomarj

Lizard Men That Fight to The Death
The Suss is cold, wet and dreary. In some places, the rains have turned the forest floor into a near swamp. Some areas as deep as a meter. After slowly making their way, the adventurers come across a stone bridge 100 yards long and almost 6 or 7 meters wide. It hovers just a foot (30 cm’s) off the murky water that lies ahead. The sides of the bridge are partially covered by water weeds growing out of the water.
Barok, goes ahead to check for any traps. Bob and Raisa and the rest of the party slowly follow. Suddenly 20 Lizard Men come out of the water.
They hurl javelins before entering into melee. Barok is able to stay far enough back and shoot arrows.
Bob and Raisa are immediately surrounded. The others move up. Vulwin stays back and shoots arrows. But he just isn’t hitting, again! Raisa is knocked unconscious. The mage is hit, but is able to quickly retreat before being killed.
No matter how many Lizard Men go down, it seems strange that they’re fighting as if they do not fear death. Like they’re in some kind of trance. They fight until they are all dead.

The Ancient Temple
The party is able to cross the bridge without further interruption. After a few more hours of travel through the murky and wet forest floor, the adventurers come across a huge stone platform, rising out of the water in the side of a sheer, muddy mound.
Three huge well-worn stone steps ascend from the water itself to the surface of a platform. A number of spikes are driven into these steps. As if to aid in helping climb them.
Someone notices a body just barely underneath the water. It’s a soldier of Ulek. He looks like he’s been dead for at least a few weeks. There are several arrows buried deep into his chest.

5th of Sunsebb 586 CY

Just west of the Suss Forest
A cold and clear day

It’s early in the morning. The barge took just a few hours to cross the Jewel river. As the adventurers march east for just a few hours, they notice a family of ogres. The ogres have not noticed them. The party decides to avoid them.
The Black Dragon
Several hours later, the party is just hundreds of yards away from the forest. They notice something in the sky, circling, and then quickly descending.
It’s a huge black dragon. From its size it must be at least several hundred years old. It lands right in front of the forest and just sits there. Pip decides to try and talk with it. But the moment the halfling gets close enough, the dragon breaths acid that not only scorches the ground, it nearly burns Pip alive. It’s obvious the dragon is just toying with him. It says something in perfect halfling and fly’s off.
The Suss Forest
The Suss has always been a dark, dreary, dangerous place, full of thorn trees, brambles, briars, and thickets-and worse, for there are very old hangman trees and other horrors within its confines. Its massive trees are black with age, and seem to whisper and talk amongst themselves when an interloper dares to walk beneath. Some claim that ripples of waving leaves and moving branches can be seen in the path of those entering the Suss.
The party marches several hours deep into the forest and make camp for the night. Bob will stay awake and take first watch.
A few hours later the party is awakened by a fight that only takes seconds. Bob has quickly done away with a large spider

4th of Sunsebb 586 CY

A cold and overcast day
Port city of Thunderstrike
The adventurers arrive without incident.

The Robin’s Breasts Inn
The party notices there are only around 15 customers in the tavern room. Most appear to be local farmers and artisans.
They are immediately welcomed by the innkeeper. A portly, middle-aged male human who introduces himself as William Brightboy. He’s a loyal follower of Corrond and The Principality of Ulek. He keeps an old sword and wooden staff handy. He’s happy to share that he rarely has to use either.
There’s also a lanky man dressed in colorful clothing, sitting alone in the corner. He’s softly plucking on a stringed instrument.
The bard introduces himself as “Pluck” and offers a song for 5gp. The party is able to bargain him down to just 1gp. The crowd is not happy, and neither is the innkeeper.
The bard begins:
“Sakatha once was a Great Lizard King,
Said to have power stored in a ring
O’er swamplands and plains lands his dominions they spread,
His very name filled all creatures with dread
To build his great tomb in the midst of the marsh,
Many have died in slavery most harsh.
His minions took all of our best for his altar,
Not for a day did his bloody thirst falter"
The bard stops and insists that to finish his song, it will cost just a little more. The party obliges him. He continues:
“And now he awaits in the cold sleep of death.
His day of awakening, his first newborn breath
Though deep in the ground his followers closed him,
He’ll come back for vengeance on those who opposed him"

Following the bard’s performance is a long and dead silence from the room. The bard tries to break the silence by saying, “Come now, good people. This is naught but a ballad used to frighten naughty children at night” But his attempts at good cheer fails. The customers begin to leave the inn. And of course the innkeeper isn’t happy. “I told you to keep that damn song to yourself,” he says.
The adventurers are well fed and stay at the inn for the night. “The barge will be ready to sail in the morning,” says the innkeeper.

2nd of Sunsebb 586 CY

City of Havenhill
A clear but very cold day

The last month of the year has arrived.
The party is finally trained, well rested, and ready. Malikai is excited for his first real adventure.
For the last couple of days Corrond and the citizens of Havenhill have been celebrating their win against the humanoids. They are also honoring the two guards that escaped, while also taking the time to remember the dead. A small group of soldiers and clerics have been sent to the battle grounds to bring home anyone that is still alive. And to burn down/destroy the camp the humanoids left behind.
Scouts are not exactly sure where the remaining humanoids have fled to. The prince suggests that the adventurers make their way to Thunderstrike. A port city on the Jewel River. His contact, William Brightboy, at The Robin’s Breast Inn will put the party up for the night. And in the morning there will be a barge ready to take them across the river just west of the Suss Forest.

28th of Ready'reat 586 CY

City of Havenhill
Freezing cold and raining on and off all day and night

The adventurers have been training for the last 3 days, 6-8 hours per day. They will need a few more days before completing their lessons.
Later that day, after an exhausting day of more training, and as everyone is enjoying an evening with the prince, 2 guards come in and insist on needing to immediately speak with Corrond. “They’re alive, sire. I can’t believe they’re alive.” Barok, two soldiers of Ulek, and several others were spotted 30 minutes outside of the city. Soldiers are being sent to their aid.
90 minutes later the halfling and the others are brought to Corrond. They tell him of what they saw, what they know, and how they escaped. Scouts are sent to find the others that are likely lost or trying to find their way back to Havenhill. The prince instructs his servants to take them to be cleaned up, fitted with new clothes and shoes, to be checked by the clerics for disease and help heal their wounds, and then returned back to him.
Later that evening
There’s a young mage by Corrond’s side. “His name is Malikai. He’s an apprentice of an old friend of mine. We have high hopes for this young lad. I want you to take him with you. You will need a mage as you head to Eldredd,” says the prince. The mage might be young, but he’s not stupid. He insists on his fair share of the loot.

27th of Ready'reat 586 CY (2 of 2)
Barok's Daring Escape

Orc camp west of The Jewel River
Early morning
A clear but near freezing day begins

Barok’s Daring Escape
It was a long night. The captives are completely terrified. No one could sleep. In a grim attempt to escape, Barok and the soldier of Ulek decide to try and use whatever bones they can find on the ground. They even resort to removing the ribs of the dead human that was killed the night before and using them as weapons to attack their captors. Three others have agreed to join in on the attack.
The soldier of Ulek uses the blood of the dead to scribble on a piece of cloth. He hopes he can throw the note, wrapped around a rock, through the small open window across the hallway. The other two soldiers of Ulek are in that room. If they can coordinate an attack, maybe they will have a chance. Unfortunately, his throw misses and hits the ground. One of the gnolls picks up the note.
Barok can see through one of the cracks in the walls that the main orc is being alerted. They are coming. The captives don’t have long to ready their attack. Barok and the soldier talk some of the captives into throwing rocks and whatever they can find at their captors when they enter the room. Barok climbs above the door way and prepares to pounce. The soldier of Ulek gets ready.
The three others prepare their attack. The captors enter the room and are completely surprised.
One of the prisoners strikes a blow on the strange looking creature. The soldier of Ulek and Barok kill one of the gnolls.
Next round the gnolls immediately kill 2 of the three prisoners helping in the attack. But the same prisoner that hits, he hits again, killing the strange creature (a zero level NPC rolled a 19 and then a 20). He then yells out, “for Ulek!”
The captives across the hallway, lead by the two other soldiers of Ulek, are able to bust through the door.
All hell breaks lose. Gnolls on both ends of the hallway open the doors to let more guards in to help contain the slaves. There’s only a small window of opportunity before the escape attempt is squashed. All of the captives decide to make a run for it. Many are killed. But many also make it out the open door near the prison rooms. 2 of the soldiers manage to escape. Barok grabs the keys from the dead gnolls hands and then escapes.
The captive that had two solid hits tries to lead his family to freedom.
He is instantly killed by one of the gnolls guarding the door.
But not before his family, his wife and two daughters, escapes. Everyone starts to run towards the mountains. They hope to lose their captives in the woods at the foot of the Lortmil Mountains. Guards on the roof’s start firing arrows. Dozens of orcs give chase. Some of the capitves are exhausted and are either captured or killed. But many do make it, Including Barok and the two soldiers.

27th of Ready'reat 586 CY (1 of 2)

City of Havenhill
The rain continues. Winter is on its way

Ulek troops are on their way to face the humanoids. The entire city is on edge. Corrond is doing his best to keep moral high.
The half-elf bard returns
Dolly returns with bad news. Barok was captured by the orcs. “I had no choice but to flee. My spell was about to run out,” she shares with the rest of the group. ___________________________________________________________________
The last three days have given a chance for the rest of the adventurers to rest, restock on supplies, and prepare for the long journey south to the Pomarj.
During these three days you hear many rumors.
Some are confirmed, some are not.
Hill giants continue to attack anyone that dares goes into the mountains.
Deep within the Lortmil Mountains dwarves mining an underground seam of mithril accidentally tunneled into an ancient temple to the archdevil Baalzebul, and were all slain.
When the dwarves who financed the expedition realized contact was lost, adventurers were sent to investigate, but they too were lost. Priests believe the green mist coming from deep within the ruined temple of St Cuthbert (the one you were just at) has something to do with this.
Before being sent to the Pomarj, many of the slaves (including Corrond’s children) and goods captured by the humanoids are being sent to the city of Elredd, north of the Pomarj. The Orchish Empire’s pirate ships are operating out of the Port of Elredd under the command of Davis the Reaver, a slaver, and longtime ally of Turrosh Mak.
The Slavelords have built many secret outposts and strongholds along the Wild Coast, but few are more open about their affiliation with the Orchish Empire and their new Slavelords as the residents of the Port Elredd
Many believe Elredd is serving as a way station for the Slavelords. And that their ultimate goal is to continue pushing north and eventually sack the city of Greyhawk.
20 miles west of Elredd there’s a village that has been taken over by a man that rides a skeletal drider. He’s believed to be a necromancer, and that he is providing undead troops and magical assistance for the Slavers.

26th of Ready'reat 586 CY

Later in the day. Dusk.
On and off cold rains. Winter is right around the corner.
Ulek lands: about 1 1/2 days march east from Havenhill

Barok and Dolly arrive at the orc camp. dolly.jpg
The scouts were correct. There are at least 2,000 humanoids ready to start marching towards Havenhill to face-off against Ulek.
The humanoid soldiers are mostly made-up of two clans: the Dripping Black orcs and Clan Gutshank. Both are being lead by Nevrash the Stalker. He is the chieftain of Clan Gutshank, one of Turrosh Mak’s most vocal supporters. There are a few smaller clans of hobgoblins, bugbears, and gnolls.
Dolly uses a spell to temporarily change herself into an orc. Barok uses the ring of invisibility. Together they will have around 10 minutes before the bard’s spell wears off. It doesn’t take long for the orc’s to pick up on the halflings scent. They know he’s there. Within a few rounds they’re able to grab him and wrestle him to the ground. Dolly has no choice but to abandon Barok, at least for now.

Barok The Captive (but not for long)
Immediately after being caught the halfling is stripped of everything, even his clothes, his feet and hands tied up. The orcs carry him to a make shift building that serves as a compound for their horses, storage, and captives.
He’s put in a prison with another 20 or so other captives. Most are just peasants, children, women. But he does overhear one of the captives claiming he’s a soldier of Ulek. He and two others in the prison across the hallway were ambushed. They’re the only survivors. There are several dead in the large cell rotting away. Large rats attempt to feast on the dead or whatever else they can eat.
The doors and hallways are being guarded by gnolls and an orc rider.
Walking up and down the hallway are at least a 1/2 a dozen odd looking creatures around 1 meter tall. Some kind of humanoid with dark gray skin, a bulbous head, the rest of their body parts disproportionate (large noses, arms of different lengths, spindly legs). You also overhear captives mention that these creatures can smell and sense you even if you’re invisible. Precisely the reason they’re hired by humanoids as guards.
The very large building is made up of trees the orcs have cut down near the Lortmil Mountains. It’s all being held together by rope, mud, whatever they can find to hold it all together. The roof is flat and is 30’ off the ground. The captives can hear footsteps coming from the roof. Likely more humanoids on guard.
The rain leaks into all the rooms. Making the ground muddy. The smell of human waste and death is overwhelming. Many of the captives look sick. They’re being fed rotten scraps of food and having to drink whatever water that leaks into the room
You can overhear the same guy that claims to be a captured soldier, “we have no choice but to try and overtake them. If we get the surprise we can break into the storage room for weapons and armor. Maybe we can hold them off until help arrives” But no one is taking him seriously. They’re too afraid and weak.
From the other prison across the way you hear scream’s. “Please, don’t take them. Please!” “They’re taking those poor souls to the fighting pits,” says one of the captives. You can also overhear other captives confirming that survivors are being shipped off to Elredd to see Davis the Reaper before being sent to Highport.

Barok Makes a Friend
It’s dark out now. The room is barely lit by the small amounts of moon light that comes in between some of the cracks of the logs.
The halfling wastes no time. He finds the soldier of Ulek and agrees trying to free themselves and as many as possible is the only option. One of the captives, a pale looking man, starts to argue with Barok and the soldier. “you’re going to get us all killed!” The back and forth is enough to alert the guards. A few minutes later 2 gnoll’s, along with one of the odd looking creatures, enter the room. One of them walks over to the man that started the argument. The gnoll takes his large flail and smashes his chest in, instantly killing him. The gnoll says something in his own tongue and leaves the room. The horror silences the captives for the rest of the evening.

25th of Ready'reat 586 CY

City of Havenhill
Population: 32,100
An early fall day. Cold and raining.

More than half of the city is made up of humans. A little over a third are dwarfs. There are even a few hundred gnomes living in their own part of the city. The city is built directly into the Lortmil Mountains. A classic dwarf compound that has taken centuries to construct.
Havenhill is where dwarfs and gnomes work deep in the mountain to recover metals and other items for weapons, armor, and magic. Ulek needs this city to keep its army well armed. If it falls, the entire Principality will likely fall.
Thousands of soldiers are camped outside. They’re getting ready to march east towards the Jewel River, just south of the Suss Forest. They hope to hold off the more than 2,000 humanoids heading west, deeper into Ulek territory.
You are greeted by one of Corrond’s personal assistants. A paladin of Cuthbert by the name of Sir Reginald. sir_reginald.jpg
He is a seasoned warrior that takes off his helmet only when it is necessary. His armor shows signs of battle, including dings and dents. It was his temple you were just at. It fell to the orcs a few months ago. “They appeared out of nowhere. We don’t know how this many made it across the Jewel,” he says.
Prince Corrond has given explicit instructions to make sure all of the adventurers are taken care of. All basic items needed, including housing, food, and drink, are of no charge.

Later that evening
Prince Corrond has arrived. Sir Reginald is there to personally meet him. “May your presence along with St Cuthbert bless our soldiers, my prince,” he says
Corrond has asked Barok and a female half elf bard that goes by Dolly to go ahead of the troops. “Anything that can turn the battle in our favour is desperately needed,” he says. It will take them 3 days to travel to the orcs and back. Barok and Lolly immediately leave. They will be 1/2 a day ahead of the soldiers.

23rd of Ready'reat 586 CY

Not far from the Lortmil Mountains
High: 46°F (7.78°C)
Low: 27°F (-2.7°C)
Winter is nearly here. The skies are clear. The day is cold and crisp

The adventurer’s wake up early. They are preparing for their march towards the Lortmil Mountains 4-5 hours away.

A couple hundred meters outside of the fort…
There’s a path lined with trees on both sides. Barok, their halfling thief, will go up and scout.
Barok, using a ring of invisibility, reaches the fort with no problems. He sees dozens and dozens of orcs on the roof and inside the fort.
He quietly makes his way inside, and in classic halfling fashion, decides to play a few tricks on some drunk orcs. He tips over one of the beers.
A fight breaks out between a few orcs. A few minutes later their leader shows up and breaks up the fight.
The leader is accompanied by a naked female slave.
After breaking up the fight the leader heads back to his quarters. Barok follows.

The rest of the adventurers patiently wait behind. But a few of them, especially the elf ranger, hear rustling in the trees. They notice makeshift ladders made out of ropes that lead up into the trees. It doesn’t take long for them to realize that there are orcs waiting to ambush anyone that tries to close in on their camp.

Before they have a chance to climb up, the orcs begin to shoot arrows at them. But luckily the adventurers knew they were there and are hidden well enough to avoid dozens of arrows reigning down on them. More than a dozen orcs begin to climb down.

But several orcs on the other side of the trees maintain their position, shoot arrows, and put the party below in danger. So Vulwin, followed by Bob, climb up and take on the orcs. Vulwin is hit by two arrows and is barely hanging on. But he and Bob finish them off. The adventurers on the ground take some damage. But still manage to finish off the orcs. Yet, one of the orcs manages to flee. He will no doubt warn the others that trouble is heading their way.

The adventurers reach the abandoned fort
After a fierce battle with at least a dozen orcs, the adventurers reach the fort just a hundred meters away. They can see at least 10 orcs on the roof of the building. It looks like it’s been abandoned for some time.
The orcs have made it into a fort of sorts. To the left and right of the front of the building there are two entrances. Both being guarded by orcs.
Vulwin, Pip, Raísa, and Glen stay behind. Hidden in the brush and tree’s
Helda, Malkam, and Bob use rings of invisibility to move up and take a closer look inside. Luckily, the orc’s have been drinking. And since it’s daylight, they’re not at their best. They hear the intruder’s. But can’t seem to focus.

Helda and Malkam move up to the door on the right.
Both will join Bob as he prepares to enter to the left. Before doing so, Malkam drops caltrops and Helda gets a spell off.
Bob rushes into the building, he’s immediately surrounded by 5-6 orcs.
Helda follows. Malkam begins to work himself into a frenzy. The others start to shoot arrows at the orcs on the roof.
Barok has managed to sneak into the orc leaders private quarters. The halfling can’t take anymore. He backstabs the filth why he’s distracted with the woman.
A perfect hit makes the orc scream out loud. He’s bleeding badly from his private area. He see’s the halfling and tries to grab him. But he’s just too wounded. Barely able to even stand up, he misses. The female slave, angered and distraught, instinctively takes a swing at the orc. She hits him square in the face. They can now hear the sound of guards quickly coming down the hallway. Barok is able to finish off the orc leader. And with a little luck from the god’s, the two guards.
Bob cuts down at least 10 orcs. Helda and Malkam take out their share.
Vulwin, Pip, and Glen have a nasty back and forth with the orcs on the roof. One of the orcs manages to score a direct hit on Glen. Immediately killing him.
The female slave tells the adventurers there’s a room filled with slaves. Her kids are in that room.
The three orcs that are left decide to enter that room and kill off as many slaves as they can. Some sick desperate attempt to keep themselves alive. Pip helps to save the day with a sleep spell. But many of the slaves have been cut down.

The adventurers notice a very subtle green mist coming from the cracks in the floorboards. Hovering just a few centimeters off the ground, the mist can easily go unnoticed. Getting close enough to smell it is not very pleasant. It wreaks of rotting garbage.

Ruined Temple of St Cuthbert
The party finds what seems to be a ruined temple. It looks like it’s been abandoned for some time. On the doors you can barely make out the symbols of St Cuthbert. Coming out the crack of the doors is the same green mist. Inside the party finds 2 priests of The Earth Dragon preparing to sacrifice a young girl. Guarding them are several gnoll’s. Leading them is a pale skin, albino looking man, wearing red robes.
The man in the red robes unleashes a massive hit on Bob and knocks him to ground. Bob is laying there, gasping for air, barely alive.
The priests grabs the girl and escape into the lower depths of the temple. A couple of the adventurer’s give chase while the others stay upstairs to finish off the gnoll’s.
The green mist below is a bit heavier and more evident. The priests takes the girl to the opposite side of the room. The adventurer’s follow and attack. They can feel what seems like human bones littering the ground. A couple of rounds later the bones animate and attack.
There are now a couple of dozen skeletons on the attack. Malcom and Helda do their best to turn them. But enough of them still do some real damage. Raisa is knocked unconscious. The other adventurer’s are taking a beating, it’s not looking good.
But with the help of Bob, Barok, Vulwin, and Pip, who come downstairs just in time, they manage to finish off the skeletons and priests.
In the middle of the room is a trap door. Around the cracks of the door the green mist is billowing out.

Back at the abandoned fort
The day is turning to night. A heavy cold rain is beginning to fall. It’s coming through the dilapidated roof of the abandoned fort. The green mist continues to find its way into the fort through the cracks of the floorboards.
Everyone is exhausted. The survivors are feasting on dried meats and wine. Some are mourning the loss of their loved one’s and are too distraught to eat or drink. They are all fearful that at any moment the place could be overrun by orcs. You overhear one of the survivors, “I heard a few hundred of them ambushed a soldiers camp that was on patrol. None were left alive”
The young woman who Barok helped to save finds her two children. One of them was the young girl the priests were going to sacrifice to the Earth Dragon god. In return for obedience and sacrifice, the Earth Dragon protects its worshippers from harm and is believed by its followers will make them prosperous. Evil humanoid races such as orcs, gnolls, goblins, hobgoblins, and ogres are known to serve this god.
Both Helda and Malkam know that the Priests of the Earth Dragon wear brown robes embroidered with gold thread and gems. During ceremonies, they wear the bronzed and magically shrunken skulls of young dragons on their heads. The two dead priests are wearing red robes, no Earth Dragon Helms.
The survivors tell the adventurer’s that at least a couple of thousand orcs are on the march to Havenhill. And that this abandoned fort is just a place to bring back and sort the captured and their loot before being sent to the Pomarj.