I3 Pharaoh – Please Loot My Tomb

I’m not really doing a review of this classic egyptian-themed D&D module (by Tracy and Laura Hickman), there’s plenty of them out there , I’ll just highlight a few things that stood out for me as I read it.

The first thing I did mentionned in the title of this post, the premise is an unusual one, the dungeon’s « owner » actually wants you to succeed! For his sins in life and foremost his vanity, the Pharaoh has brought a curse upon himself: he cannot enter the afterlife unless someone steal his most prized possessions. The irony is that of course, before he was cursed, he did took the utmost care to make his pyramid theft-proof!

Another major selling point for this module is the actual design of the lair. It’s archeologically sound. Well, that’s a bit of a stretch… Of course, there’s D&d nonsensical magic afoot but… It’s as near a realistic lair/tomb as a D&D adventure can achieve, I think. For example, there’s a « Plundered Tomb » level to fool would-be defilers into thinking they’re too late. There’s also some few nice instances of verticality in the navigation of the lair that is often neglected with most dungeons. All in all, it’s very well done.

There’s 2 non-hostile factions. The Thunes Dervishes want to protect the sanctity of the Pyramid and won’t allow defiling (looting) around them. At the same time, their leader is missing and is somewhere in the tomb. They could help the PCs, if those talk smoothly, but they’ll turned against them fast if they act as PCs are wont to do… And then there’s the bandits, who’ve had enough of the pyramid and just wish to get out. They’ll take the PCs help if offered, but they could well succumb to greed if they see any wealth brashly displayed. Interesting.

Mummy: the Return of the Tendinitis

Some more random things:

  • There’s a kind of magic healing water supply at the Temple (the entrance of the pyramid). In typical rpg fashion it is specified that the healing water loses its beneficial properties outside of the pyramid’s perimeter. Obviously to foil some players’ idiotic money scheme, I mean, I can clearly see something like: « let’s haul gallons and gallons of this water outta here, set a shop in town and we’ll be rich, nevermind the treasures! » A few years ago I had a player who loved these kind of gimmicks even if it meant, y’know, ditching the actual adventure part.
  • I’m not a fan of silliness (unless it’s my own brand) in purchased adventures. In Pharaoh, you can find a chest (trapped) full of old used orc socks. First, orcs have socks? Second, really? Orc socks in a chest? And there’s also exploding pineapples and oh! Prit the Gnome who digs tunnels with only his spoon! Sigh
  • I like the weak, but unkillable Chabang (mud) Men. The PCs can’t hack & slash away this sort of trouble and have to be clever about it.
  • The BBE (Big Bad Evil), Munafiq the power-hungry High-Priest – of course he’s now undead- is unnecessary. If I ran this adventure, I would refurbish him so he’d be a more subtle encounter.

Merchants of Anuire Session 2: A Bundle of Swords

The boys had to clean-up their playroom as a condition to play in a rpg session with me. They did a thorough job, talk about a great incentive!

Character Cast

  • Fancey Fleetfooted, Wanderer, Anuirean Male lvl 1>>2 (Edmond)
  • Ciavey the Peddler, Treasure Hunter, Halfling Male, lvl 1>>2 (Isaac)
  • Lucian the Quiet, Scholar, Anuirean Male, lvl 1>>2 (NPC)
  • Dragon the Pony
  • Death-from-Above, Trained Falcon

SHORT JOURNEY- Moderate Terrain – from Bellam Castle (Barony of Roesone) to Spiritsend Swamp (Duchy of Osoerde)

  • Embarkation roll: 10 (Hidden from Shadows)
  • Event roll (1): 4 (In need of Help)
  • Event roll (2): 4 (In need of help)
  • Arrival roll: 8 (Inspired and filled with Hope)

WEATHER – Cold, Clear

Hunting a Troll

The Count of Bellam invited the PCs to a more substantial hunt after they had captured poachers. A TROLL was roaming in the contryside, terrorizing everybody. Several patrols were sent after the monster and the PCs joined one. Fancey soon found tracks and not much later they stumbled upon the remains of a slain bear. It so happened that their own patrol found the troll (10% chance)! Peppering it with arrows with another handful of archers, they managed to wound it enough so that soldiers with spears could close-in, immobilize it before dousing it with oil and killing it with fire… 4 soldiers were grievously wounded by the troll. It went well.

The Rebels of Osoerde

An agent of the Spider River Traders convinced the PCs to bring weapons across the border, in the duchy of Osoerde. William Moergen, the true heir of Osoerde, is leading a desperate guerilla war against his late father’s ex-lieutenant, the usurper Jaison Raenech. He’s presently hidden in the Spiritsend Swamp. The Rendez-vous is just outside the swamp at its most western part.

Tumultuous Border

Leaving Bellam county, the PCs walked on a sinuous road through a hilly region before reaching the farmlands of Osoerde. A few hours in and they can see a dwarven caravan being assaulted by miners-turned-bandits. Well positioned on the slope above the ambush, Fancey and Ciavey quickly kill 3 bandits with arrows and then manage to kill the bandit leader with 2 more arrows. The surviving bandits surrender and are free to leave. Mazzik, on behalf of the grateful Dwarves, gives a nice helm to Ciavey.

A few hours later, horseriders want to know the PCs’ business in Osoerde but silver-tongued Ciavey convince the patrolmen of their legitimacy.

Swampfever

The PCs arrive at a small, isolated village that suffers from a plague of swampfever. Lucian knows what kind of healing herbs could help them, if they ever find any.

Payment Interrupted

They finally arrived at the rendez-vous point and were proceeding to the exchange when shouts alarmed them of an incoming enemy patrol. The PCs and rebels fled in the Spiritsend Swamp and evaded the duke’s men.

DM notes

  • The Troll killed the bear gratuitously, meaning its truly a monster and deserving of death.
  • The PCs are almost out of arrows from all that shooting
  • 2 hours is about the max I can do if we’re to play with Edmond, not bad at all

Merchants of Anuire – Session 1 – Wine & Venison

Happy New year!

I’m starting what may be a whole new campaign with my kids. I’ve kept this first session really basic. I hope to get things more imaginative in the next sessions, if we keep at it.

Campaign frame

  • We’re playing in the Birthright (TSR 1995) setting, with the continent of Cerilia. I was fascinated by this setting when I was a teenager and I can make use of the impressive level of details it got for the style of campaign I have in mind
  • Oddly, I’m using Cubicle 7’s Adventures in Middle Earth (5e OGL adaptation), even if it’s not Tolkien’s world we’re playing in, for the implied low magic setting and also, from this book there’s the Journey Mechanics that suits perfectly my purpose for a mercantile campaign of sort
  • In this homebrewed version of Birthright, there’s no blooded scions à la highlander. Maybe there’ll be a simplified domain/regency play but that would be much further in the campaign
  • Azrai is Cerilia’s version of Sauron and is responsible for most that is evil in the world. If someone do evil he’s in fact succumbing to Azrai’s « Shadow ». Too much of this and you turn into a literal monster.

Background

The kingdom of Anuire is at peace but, with the Iron Throne still vacant, war may not be far.

In Eastern Anuire, in the Barony of Roesone…

Mattheus, Ciavey’s Uncle, has been ambushed by thugs, most certainly from Orthien Tane’s gang. Many of his long-time employees have been slain and Mattheus himself is in a critical state. Fighting for his life and facing bankruptcy, Mattheus relies on his nephew (and his friends) to save the family business.

Character Cast

  • Fancey Fleetfooted, Wanderer, Anuirean Male lvl 1 (Edmond)
  • Ciavey the Peddler, Treasure Hunter, Halfling Male, lvl 1 (Isaac)
  • Lucian the Quiet, Scholar, Anuirean Male, lvl 1 (NPC)
  • Dragon the Pony (NPC)

Roads well-traveled

SHORT JOURNEY- Easy Terrain – from Fairfield to Bellam Castle (Barony of Roesone)

  • Embarkation roll: 11 (with hopeful hearts and clear purpose)
  • Journey events roll (x1): 1 (a chance encounter)
  • Arrival roll: 7 (tall tales and great deeds)

WEATHER – Cloudy

  • Talked to farmers around Fairfield, bought sheep wool, bought an old broadsword
  • Reached Abbey of the Lady, sold sheep wool, bought high-end wine. A woodcutter, a servant of the abbey, is missing. PCs chose not to take part in a rescue sortie.
  • Encountered Spider River Traders merchants going the other way, one Hughes said they could make some well-paid work if they go at their outpost in the west
  • Paid the ferry toll to cross Black river
  • Reached Bellam Castle, sold Abbey of the Lady wine for good profit
  • Just in time for an archery contest! Fancey took part with 3 other competitors and won with the best shot after 3 arrows! The prize is a wonderful Trained Falcon which is promptly named Death-from-Above.
  • The Count of Bellam praises Fancey for his win and offers him to become a game warden. Fancey don’t want to settle down and says so. The Count asks if he would do a one-time job then of hunting down poachers for him?
  • Fancey and Ciavey accept the job. Fancey uses his impressive tracking skills and they find the poachers, 2 Halflings, in the forest near a spring. They kill one with 2 arrows, the other flees but quickly surrender when Death-From-Above is launched at him.
  • Gained valuable Red Deer venison and antlers

DM notes

  • The 3 « Journey » rolls were almost optimal, which means less danger on the road and more profitable deals
  • I had a little talk with the boys about killing a poacher after the session. I should have done it beforehand. I don’t want them killing non-monsters left and right just because they can. Something about raising kids properly and all!
  • Mom roleplayed Count of Bellam to great effect!

Back to the beach – (meet the crabmen) – review

J’ai à peu près fait le tour des aventures des dungeon magazine (pdf gratuits en ligne) et, pour moi, l’aventure Back to the beach (par Willie Walsh, dungeon magazine 50, 1994) sort nettement du lot.

Synopsis: Un lieu de pèlerinage peu fréquenté devient tout d’un coup le centre d’attention lorsque des ruines sont découvertes sur place. Les agents du Roi envoyés pour démystifier l’endroit sont cependant confrontés à des créatures inconnues d’eux et fuient les lieux en proie à la panique. Un décret royal annonce une récompense aux braves aventuriers qui extermineront ces créatures.

Le gros de l’histoire tourne autour d’un malentendu (j’aime toujours cette prémisse), alors que des « monstres » sont perçus comme une menace devant être éliminée (classiquement), tandis que le scénario est parsemé d’indices pour le percer à jour (pour des joueurs le moindrement attentifs), ainsi que des fausses pistes pouvant égarer les têtes brûlées.

L’adversaire désigné, les Hommes-Crabes, n’en est pas vraiment un. Ceux-ci n’attaqueront que pour se défendre et ils ont des motivations autre que kill! kill! kill! D’ailleurs, chose assez rare dans D&D, l’auteur leur a élaboré une culture assez développée (pour un courte aventure) empreinte d’actes ritualisés et de petits traits quirky. Les Hommes-Crabes potentiellement rencontrés (non-hachés menu par les PJs) ont des noms, des personnalités distinctes, des rôles dans leur tribu, etc. Le tout est très divertissant à lire.

En quelques points:

  • courte aventure principalement d’investigation et de communication
  • peu de locations mais facilement intégrable dans une campagne déjà existante
  • peu d’avantages pécuniers pour les PJs
  • des alliées potentiels de gagnés plus la satisfaction de ne pas avoir massacrées des créatures évoluées!

Undermountain: Lonely Vampyre

With my previous post you could think I don’t like The Ruins of Undermountain but that’s not the case, there’s a lot of clever stuff in its pages.

One location/encounter in particular reminded me how much I like unlikely allies as a DM. I’m not talking about factions (which are nice too) but monsters or seemingly evil characters that, under certain circumstances, can bond with the PCs. I like it but I also know from experience that Players are absolutely thrilled by it!

But here’s the one I’m talking about here (1991’s spoiler I guess):

This vampyre was once a female human merchant of Waterdeep, Spadreera Omarkhont. She now appears as a slim, svelte, beautiful (but dirty) creature clad only in ash-covered tatters, her eyes glittering with red fire and much of her hair all burnt away.

Yeah, she’s a fire vampire.

Spadreera is lonely, more than anything else. She’d like to chat and gossip about Waterdeep regularly, with someone she could regard as a friend and will try to befriend any beings who survive her initial attack, and cease hostilities when she offers to. PCs who befriend Spadreera never need fear attack from her again. She will not accompany PCs out of the dungeon, and is reluctant even to leave her lair but she will meet PCs at agreed-upon places elsewhere on this level, and even aid them against encountered monsters. She does not appreciate being used, however PCs would be wise not to try to dupe her into fighting every other monster on this level. Spadreera will plead to any befriended creatures for visits as often as possible! In return, she can guard treasure for PCs, give them all the (sadly outdated) information she knows about the intrigues and secrets of Waterdeep, and give them advice on trade (she was a very shrewd merchant). Her lair can become a hideout and safe house for PCs, if they conduct themselves in the right manner.

She’s still a monster in some way but:

Spadreera’s alignment and tendencies are overruled by her loneliness; she will look for prey and opportunities to unleash her cruelty elsewhere, among the monsters that roam this level, and never harm PC friends. She will even nurse injured PCs faithfully back to health without attacking them!

What an interesting NPC!

Do you know of any other cool unlikely ally?

Undermountain: The Wizard inside a Stuffed Beholder

I was skimming through AD&D Ruins of Undermountain, just to see how it compares with 5E Dungeon of the Mad Mage, and I stumbled upon this:

Old Xoblob’s shop

The shop is named for the stuffed, eyeless beholder that hangs from the ceiling inside. Aside from being a curiosity in itself, the beholder conceals a hired wizard who can fire a wand of paralysis out of the dust-covered eye tyrant’s mouth.

I chuckled to myself when I read this. Just picture the poor guy, hidden in a stuffed beholder, twiddling his thumbs ALL DAY LONG!

Adventurers won’t steal from Xoblob’s shop so easily.

Dandalus will trade with whoever comes through the gate. He makes no enemies, he merely charges more for services to those attackers or doublecrossers. Dandalus always takes the following precautions: he wears a ring of spell turning, a ring of free action, and a greenstone amulet; he always carries two potions of extra-healing, an elixir of health, two iron bands of Bilarro spheres, and six beads of force in his pockets.

The shopkeeper will charge more for services to attackers…

A magic shop, a wizard bored out of his mind and a shopkeeper that EXPECTS to be assaulted by his usual clients…

Hilarious nonsense.

Magic Items – Chult- II

Here’s a few more homebrewed magic items that have appeared in my campaign recently. The Warclub of Death is based on one of my son’s ideas. He’s awesome!

Dryad’s Evolving Bow

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Weapon (Longbow), Very Rare (requires attunement)

Offered by a grateful dryad, this longbow starts as a +1 magic weapon but evolves over time. Each 3 levels you have had the dryad’s evolving bow attuned you can strengthen the bow as follows (in order):

  • Add +1d4 piercing damage (thorns appear on arrows as they hit a target)
  • The dryad’s evolving bow is now +2
  • If an arrow hits something, you can then cast Grasping Vine as a bonus action, with the arrow as the targeted spot of the spell.  The bow has 3 charges, it regains 1d2+1 charges each dawn
  • The dryad’s evolving bow is now +3
  • You can cast Tree Stride as a bonus action, it costs 2 charges to do so, the bow has now 7 charges, it regains 1d6+1 charges each dawn

Curse

Curse of the Tree Hugger. While you are attuned to this bow, you have disadvantage to any attacks you make against plant-type creatures.

Cloak of the Dragonfly

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wondrous item, rare (requires attunement)

While flying, your speed is increased by 10′. Additionally, Stirges are very reluctant to attack you and won’t do so unless absolutely cornered.

Boots of Bug Squashing

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wondrous item, rare (requires attunement)

As a bonus action, you can make a (strength) melee attack against an insect-type creature (or swarm) for 2d6 + str damage.

Poniard of the Ancient One

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weapon (dagger), rare

This + 1 dagger has 3 charges. When you hit with an attack, as a free action, you can expand a charge to paralyze the target for 1 round (constitution save DC 12). The poniard regains all of its charges after a long rest.

Warclub of Death (probably yours)

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weapon (club), very rare (requires attunement)

This is as a Nine Lives Stealer +2 club.

Curse, Atavistic Instinct: While attuned to the Warclub of Death, you can’t stand the idea of wearing any clothing or armor.

Lord Snail’s Magic Shell

Wondrous item, very rare

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This large shell functions as a Bag of Holding.

Curse: Legacy of a Pervert

Whenever you try to retrieve an item (as an action) from the Lord Snail’ Shell, you have 50% chance to pick instead one of the late Lord Snail’s innumerable erotic charcoal drawings (depicting his ertswhile dungeon neighbour, a beautiful Nereid).

Hat of the Spider

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Wondrous item, rare (requires attunement)

While wearing this hat, you gain the following benefits:

  • You ignore movement restrictions caused by webbing.
  • You have the ability to comprehend and verbally communicate with spiders.
  • You can use an action to conjure a Swarm of Spiders (Monster manual: Swarm of Insects statistics) within 90′ of you that will be under your control for 10 minutes and then disappears. Once used, this property of the hat can’t be used again until next dawn.

Broadsword of the Philistine

weapon (sword), rare (requires attunement)

This is a +1 longsword. If both your intelligence and wisdom bonuses (taken separately) are lower than your target’s, you add 1d8 to damage.

Curse of the Philistine: While attuned to this weapon you lose one non-weapon proficiency (determined randomly each day).

Three Kingdoms – Vol III- Extract – Rattan-Armored Soldiers

The Chinese classic Three Kingdoms is one of a kind historical novel. An epic drama, mostly about warfare and governing; here and there we can find interesting fantasy tidbits.

« There is a kingdom that can defeat the Riverlanders. » « Where? » asked Meng Huo. « To the southeast, seven hundred li from here, » the chief responded. « The Black Lance kingdom. Their chief, Wutugu, is some twelve spans tall, eats no grain, and survives on live snakes and vicious animals. His body is covered with scales no arrow or blade can pierce. The men in his command have rattan armor made from vines that grow in the ravines and wind around their rocky walls. Natives pick the vines, soak them in oil for half a year, then dry them in the sun. After being thoroughly dried, they are returned to the oil. The vines are dried and soaked this way ten times before being made into armor. The cured rattan keeps the body afloat and dry, as well as safe from arrow and blade; that’s why they’re called « rattan-armored soldiers ».

[…]

The Man warriors swarmed, covering the terrain. The Riverlanders shot their crossbow bolts; but the rattan was impenetrable, and the arrows dropped harmlessly. Neither the strokes of their blades nor the thrusts of their spears could break through it. The Man wielded their sharp knives and steel forks against the Riverlanders, who, unable to defend themselves, eventually withdrew. Wei Yan turned back and rushed to the riverside, where he watched im amazement as the enemy crossed over in full armor: those taken by fatigue simply removed their armor and used it to float across.

[…]

On the sixteenth day Wei Yan led his battle-worn men forth to oppose the rattan-armored Man. Riding an elephant, Wutugu took the lead. He wore a wolf-beard cap decorated with the sun and the moon. Gold and pearls laced his garment, through which his torso’s hard-scaled skin showed. A subtle fire darted from his eyes. Pointing to Wei Yan, he pronounced his malediction. Wei Yan wheeled round and fled again. The Man gave chase in full force. Wei Yan maneuvered around into Winding Serpent Valley as he made for the white flag. Wutugu closed in for the kill; seeing the hills bare, he had assumed he was safe from ambush.

When he reached the middle of the valley, Wutugu saw several dozen wagons with black-painted containers blocking the road. A soldier reported, « This is the Riverlands grain transport route. Your Highness’s arrival has caused them to flee and leave their carts. » Wutugu triumphantly urged his warriors to press the chase to the other end of the valley. There they found no Riverlands troops; but great logs and volleys of rocks crashed down, sealing the exit. Wutugu ordered his men to open the road, He had resumed his advance, when carts of all sizes loaded with burning wood loomed out of nowhere! Wutugu ordered immediate retreat. But from his rear ranks shouts went up: « The exit is blocked by dry tinder, and the carts, filled with powder, are in flames! » Wutugu remained calm because the site was too bare to conceal an ambush.. He ordered his men to escape however they could. Then, lo, from both sides of the valley torches were hurled down, hitting fuses on the ground that ignited iron missiles. The whole valley began dancing wildly with fiery light, and the rattan armor caught fire when touched by the flames. Wutugu and his thirty thousand men perished in Windind Serpent Valley, huddled together in the inferno.

From a hilltop Kongming looked down upon the incinerated men strewn over the valley. Most of them had had their heads and faces pulverized by the falling missiles. An unbearable stench rose from their corpses. Kongming wept and sighed at the carnage. « Whatever service to the shrines of Han this represents, my life-span will be shortened for it », he said. His words deeply touched every officer and man.

Session 29 – The Hermit of Kir Sabal

Petite session avec une side-quest spécialement désignée pour le perso d’Olivier, accompagné encore une fois par ses deux jeunes cousins.

  • (Olivier) Leon, (level 5>>6) Human Monk (way of shadow), Outlander, revenu à la vie grâce à Zotzilaha à condition qu’il élimine un esprit renégat, ce qu’il a fait, maintenant libre de faire ce qu’il veut
  • (Isaac) Anfi, (level 6) Locathah Fighter (eldritch knight), Outlander, venu sur la terre ferme en passant par la Caverne-Tunnel, là pour découvrir ce nouvel environnement
  • (Edmond) La Salamandre, peut maintenant changer de taille temporairement et devenir géante

Rusés Raptors

Après avoir entendu parler du Grand Maître d’arts martiaux Nuage Immanent, de Kir Sabal, Leon est résolu à aller le trouver pour apprendre de lui. Accompagné de ses deux compagnons, il traverse le fleuve Olung pour aller ver le Sud. La nuit suivante est mouvementée puisqu’ils doivent repousser une attaque de Deinonychus. En effet, Leon avait aperçu un des raptors sans se douter que celui-ci faisait diversion pour plusieurs de ses compères. (1)

Singe Démoniaque

La journée suivante, les aventuriers doivent se montrer vigilants puisqu’ils frôlent le territoire du Dieu Singe. Et effectivement ils seront confrontés à un de ses soldats.

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Tout d’un coup le sol sous leurs pieds devient du sable mouvant! Mais ce n’était qu’une illusion, devant eux apparaît soudainement la vraie menace: un singe monstrueux! Après quelques échanges de coups, le singe disparaît avant de ré-attaquer par surprise. Cependant, les PJs ont rapidement le dessus et abattent leur adversaire.

Flanc de Falaise

Les aventuriers arrivent à la demeure de l’ermite mais son habitation se révèle difficile d’accès (2).

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Après de l’escalade périlleuse, des pièges évités de justesse et un combat contre 3 zorbos, les PJs prennent une pause le temps de souffler un peu.

L’Accueil de l’Ermite

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C’est à ce moment que le maître des lieux se manifeste, descendant vers eux en lévitant! Il semble content de leur visite et leur offre du thé (3). Ensuite ils les invitent à son dojo pour une petite séance d’entraînement. Leon et Anfi ont un aperçu des vastes pouvoirs du Grand Maître et apprennent des techniques inédites de combat (4).

Notes du DM

  1. un classique à la jurassique park, mais aucun d’eux ne l’a vu!
  2. dans le module Tomb of Annihilation mais je n’ai rien gardé sauf l’apparence des lieux
  3. ce que les garçons voient d’abord avec suspicion
  4. Olivier s’est empressé de calculer ce serait quoi le potentiel dommage maximum de sa nouvelle attaque…

Session 28 – Emerald Eye

Mon neveu était en visite chez moi et il voulait ABSOLUMENT une session de D&D, lui et mes fils! Laissez-moi vous dire que faire une session pour 3 enfants, de 5, 8 et 11 ans, c’est pas de tout repos! 

  • (Olivier) Leon, (level 5) Human Monk (way of shadow), Outlander, revenu à la vie grâce à Zotzilaha à condition qu’il élimine un esprit renégat, ce qu’il a fait, maintenant libre de faire ce qu’il veut
  • (Isaac) Anfi, (level 6) Locathah Fighter (eldritch knight), Outlander, venu sur la terre ferme en passant par la Caverne-Tunnel, là pour découvrir ce nouvel environnement
  • (Edmond) La Salamandre, peut maintenant changer de taille temporairement et devenir géante

Visiteurs Indésirables

Un bateau a jeté l’ancre en face de Port Castigliar depuis quelques jours (1-2). Des pirates. Heureusement, ils ne sont pas ouvertement hostiles, même que plusieurs villageois ont pu faire de bonnes affaires avec eux. Mais voilà, ils ne partent pas…

Préparent-ils quelques coups fourrés? L’inquiétude monte. Comment leur faire comprendre clairement qu’ils ont dépassés leur temps alloué? Cette tâche ingrate est délégué aux aventuriers!

8 pirates sont au village à ce moment-ci en train de prendre un coup à l’auberge la Cithare et le Crâne. Leon et Anfi viennent à leur rencontre alors qu’ils en sortent. Leon offre de payer pour que les pirates quittent mais cela ne fait qu’attiser leur convoitise et un combat s’ensuit.

Un Ice Knife bien placé d’Anfi blesse plusieurs des malfrats alors que la Salamandre, sous sa forme géante, sème la terreur parmi eux. Le second-en-commande des pirates vient affronter les aventuriers, il se transforme en Wereshark!

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Il blesse légèrement Leon d’un coup de coutelas mais ce dernier parvient à éviter les terribles mâchoires et à répliquer efficacement. 3 pirates sont inconscients, c’est la débandade. Les PJs les laissent s’enfuir à leur barque, à l’exception du Wereshark qu’ils abattent. (3)

Convoitises

Leur mission accomplie, Leon a dans l’idée de tirer un bénéfice personnel de toute cette histoire de pirates. Il sait que le capitaine a un œil remplacé par une émeraude (4) et voilà qui l’intéresse… Cependant, un assaut frontal est hors de question, il leur faut un bon plan…

Après quelques hésitations (5) les PJs optent pour une stratégie hit & run. Anfi va suivre le bateau (qui s’en va) à la nage (puisque l’eau est son élément naturel) et Leon va utiliser une faveur de Zotzilaha pour se transformer en chauve-souris et, la nuit venue, passer à l’action.

Suspendu la tête en bas en attendant le bon moment, Leon frappe alors que le capitaine est sur le deck. Il surgit et d’un coup de patte déloge l’émeraude avant de s’enfuir dans la nuit, laissant le capitaine pantois!

Attirer la Foudre

Tout n’est pas gagné par contre. Parmi les pirates il y a une sorcière et celle-ci se transforme en albatros pour ensuite poursuivre Leon. Elle ralentit le fuyard avec un Gust of Wind et, juste après, invoque un Call Lightning! En pleine mer, avec la foudre qui lui tombe dessus, Leon commence à mesurer les conséquences de sa convoitise mais heureusement pour lui il a un compagnon pour l’aider! Anfi, parmi les flots, ne tarde pas à intervenir et envoient sort après sort contre la sorcière. Un ultime éclair frappe Leon qui, blessé grièvement, tombe en mer (6). La sorcière ne peut capitaliser sur cette victoire, blessée, elle doit fuir à grands coups d’ailes.

Anfi soigne Leon et le ramène sur la terre ferme.

Notes du DM

  1. Les quais ne peuvent accueillir un bateau de cette taille, les pirates sont autorisés à un passage de barque à la fois.
  2. une autre session avec thématique pirates, j’aurais peut-être pu lier ça avec la récente découverte du trésor mais je ne l’ai pas fait
  3. bon, d&d avec des enfants, faut y réfléchir un peu, surtout quand c’est eux qui prennent les décisions… tuer un monstre ça va, mais j’ai encouragé les garçons à ne pas tuer de « personnes » s’ils n’y étaient pas forcés
  4. j’avais un vague souvenir qu’un des 3 pirates dans le module ToA avait un oeil de pierre précieuse et je l’ai utilisé
  5. BEAUCOUP d’hésitations! :p
  6. l’émeraude lui échappant est récupéré en un coup de langue d’Edmond!