Dark Radiance

A Murder in Boldavia

The Stormwardens were sent to Boldavia to complete their mission for the Raven’s Eye – to find out who was funding the Resistance. A member of the Raven’s Eye, the Proctor, asked them to investigate the murder of an influential resistance member – an opera singer called Keilani. They were given identification that said that they were members of the Dark Lanterns, the local police force in Igoravich, the capital of Boldavia. Officer Carlotta was assigned to the Stormwardens to assist, although she wasn’t all that happy about the prospect.

As they examined the body, they determined that she had been killed by a golem with metallic hands. This creature was able to open a warded box, which was warded against living and undead. Just as they were finishing up examining the crime scene, a beholder attacked! After fighting of the beholder, they gave chase on a raven-winged gondola.

The beholder fled to the Bonewarrens, a nightmare zone of outcastes that surrounded the city of Igoravich. From a social planning perspective, it gave the vampire overlords a place to easily keep track of the dissidents and disenfranchised of Igoravich.

The Stormwardens trailed the beholder to a large tavern in the middle of the slums. They entered the tavern differently – Cannech snuck through the roof and observed a small green horde dragon counting coins. Walking through the main entrance, Ingrid demanded the strongest drink the house. Unfortunately, she failed her ruses and was forced to drink it, knocking her cold. Altani rescued a goblin from being cooked, who offer her his assistance. The bouncer at the door wanted money so tha Stormwardens could visit the crime lord, Malekar, but Gretched started a fight instead. To their amazement, none of the Stormwardens could defeat the bouncer, an undead, demonic ogre of some description

After fleeing the Bone Warrens, the Stormwardens continued to investigate the murder of Keilani, becoming involved in the web of corruption and intrigue between the ruling vampiric nobility.
They found that Keilani wanted the spellbook to use the ritual to peel back the cloud cover of Boldavia, and destroy the vampire’s sovereignty. To get the spell book, Keilani had an affair with Morphail’s brother, Boyar Yuri Ivanov, a powerful sorcerer. Keilani learned that her patron, Tatyana, was behind the Dark Rose resistance, and it was only a game to her. Furious, Keilani gave the book to Malakhar, the mysterious ruler of the Bonewarrens. After some investigation, the Stormwardens traced Keilani’s murder back to Tatyana.

They briefly negotiated with Malakhar, but refused to hand him the spellbook when he would not to name his mysterious client. Then, the Stormwardens reported Tatyana’s activities to Prince Morphail, who gave each of them a boon. Angharad was given assistance to defeat the shadow elves in Darokin, while Gretchen asked for assistance in redeeming Prince Rupert. Other party members asked for magical items. Ingrid asked to become a vampire, and was given the Dark Embrace. However, the Stormwardens refused to accept Ingrid’s new life style choice, and she left the party.

Morphail then co-ordinated a strike on Malakhar’s hideout, but he escaped.

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Catching up...
In which the GM recalls previous events and updates the adventure log in one furiously long post....

Soon, the pleasant time in Glantri City soured as the Stormwardens were drawn into a web of intrigue and machinations.

Patrin learned that he had inherited his father’s curse, which was to assemble the Deck of Many Things. Ingrid was contacted by the Boldavian Resistance. The Dark Rose, leader of the Resistance, had been kidnapped by vampires, and was being held in Glantri City, at the Boldavian Ambassador’s mansion.

Ingrid persuaded the PCs to help her with her cause. They infiltrated the mansion, but were unfortunately captured by the Boldavian Guard. However, Ingrid did learn that the Dark Rose’s soul had been captured in a book. Gretchen used her connections to Prince Rupert to gain bail. Cannech hid the book at the forge but gave it back in order to reduce their sentences.

In order to avoid politcal fallout, the Stormwardens agreed to do a favour for the Boldavian Court, guided by the ’Raven’s Eye’, Prince Morphail’s secret police. They were sent to Boldavia in order to infiltrate the resistance. They did so, and proved themselves by cleansing a haunted orphanage of evil, while at the same time finding three village c
but aborted their mission halfway through when Gretchen learned that Prince Rupert was a target of a mysterious assassin!

After short-cutting through a nightmare realm of puzzles and danger dedicated to Numena, the immmortal of mysteries, the Stormwards returned to Glantri City. There, they found the Gondala Festival in full-swing. Prince Rupert was showing off his gigantic golem, the Earthshaker, that had fantastic defensive capabilities.

Learning that the assassin was already inside the golem with the Prince, the Stormwardens infiltrated. There they found that the golem’s defences had been turned out – loyal Aalbanese guards had been killed by horrid traps and summoned creatures. After brute-forcing their way through the defences, the Stormwardens found Prince Rupert involved in a suspicious summoning ritual.

They disrupted the ritual, only to find themselves on trial! Prince Rupert said that he was following some plan of his father’s, and his only plan was to cleanse the Radiance, which none of the other Princes of Glantri seemed care about. In order to avoid public shame for tampering with the Radiance, Rupert resigned from the Aalbanese Princeship to the lonely Von Bek castle to pursue his researches. Gretchen read about this a letter, but could not return to be by the Prince’s side, as the the Raven’s Eye requested that the Stormwardens return to Boldavia to complete their mission.

On the way, the Stormwardens went to try and find the children that they had promised to look after. It turned out that Mad Marty, Cannech’s uncle who had been sent to fetch them, had gotten lost in a mysterious dungeon.

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Glantri City
Episode 10

Cannech, ordered by Gretchen, snuck ahead of the paladin and questioned the Mad Oracle about the source of the terrorist activity. However, the answer ‘one of the thirteen princes’ wasn’t quite what he was expecting. The Oracle also advised him to be in Glantri City for the Gondala Games, to learn more about what was going on.

When the paladin learned that the PCs had tricked her, she was furious. However, Patrin calmed her rage, telling that she wasn’t entirely privy to the ways of the Star Dragon. The paladin, who told them to use the name Angharad for her, calmed down and said she would stay with the PCs as they might be the real source of her divine vision about aid for the people of Darokin. The PCs returned to Blackstone.

Before the train left for Glantri City, Ingrid investigated the records of Patrin’s parents, finding out the old floatstone farm that had once belonged to them before they had sold it off under mysterious circumstances. Ingrid met a red-scaled dragonborn called Rowdy Brasstail, who was managing the farm, and a smaller blue-scaled dragonborn who called herself Priss Brasstail, who had an uncanny resemblance to Patrin. Ingrid persuaded Rowdy and Pris to visit Glantri City with her, under the pretext of setting up a business deal with Cannech’s forge.

The PCs got on the train and travelled back to Glantri City. Ingrid introduced the dragonborn to Patrin; while Rowdy talked business with Cannech, Priss snapped at Patrin who realised that he was talking to his sister. After Priss finished her yelling, she told Patrin how her father had been a no-good gambler and had gambled away the farm. She also said that their mother had vanished and she wasn’t sure where she was now. All that she had left was a life working on a farm that her family no longer owned, and a strange card that she showed to Patrin, with the symbol for a ‘Star’ on it.

Ingrid noticed a mysterious, somewhat rogueish elf who and tried to set up an encounter between him and Angharad. However, the paladin didn’t get entirely drunk and staggered, leaving Ingrid to strike up a conversation with the elf, who said his name was Bran and that he was an information broker.

Gretchen went to her cabin and read a book.

When the PCs arrived in Glantri City, they were hailed as heroes! They were approached by a mysterious figure in a dark cloak – it was Prince Rupert in disguise! He invited Gretchen to a dinner at the Boldavian ambassador’s mansion, while the other PCs went shopping. Cannech worked on a gondala for the mid-winter games, to represent his forge, and everyone enjoyed a pleasant few days in the city.

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Off the Rails
Episode 9

The PCs were travelling to New Kolland by lighting rail, in order to find the Mad Oracle. However, as they were travelling, Cannech noted that the train was going too fast. The PCs hurried to the engine carriage, where they saw that hooded, cloaked terrorists were attacking the lightning elemental that powered the carraige. A mysterious figure on a dragon was flying up overhead, keeping up with the train. Altani lunged forward and attacked the elemental, while the others attacked the ritualists. The figure on the dragon cut the rope and flew away.

Gretchen realised that the hooded figures were all students from the magical academy. However, the train was going too fast for anyone to slow it down and it looked like it was going to fall off into a chasm. Ingrid came up with a desperate idea to release the lightning elemental and to create a dimensional on the elemental’s wake, into the Elemental Chaos.

The mad idea worked and the train was stranded on a stange, floating island in the midst of the Chaos. Luckily, the train had crashed into a Githzerai monastery, where the local inhabitants wanted to ‘rescue’ the train survivors from disaster and free them from the shackles of their minds. The PCs persuaded the Githzerai to ‘rescue’ the student terrorists and return the train to Glantri. A rift opened up, and the train appeared at the end stop, right on schedule! Meanwhile, the PCs had further learned from the students’ Elemental Liberation Front that there was a secret organisation funding Glantrian fringe groups – the question was, to what end?

Meanwhile, they walked around the frontier town of Blackstone, glad to be off the train. They discovered that there was another adventurer in town, an eladrin paladin who wanted to ask the Oracle questions about how to save Darokin from the shadow elf invasion. But the Oracle would only answer on question before vanishing. Whose need was greater – the PCs, who wanted to ask about the source of the terrorist activity, or the beleaguered villagers of Darokin?

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Grand Army Day
Episode 8

It was Grand Army Day and the PCs were in Aalban with the Beckenbauer Family. Given the success at returning the lost von Bek family estate to the crown, Gretchen had been invited to give a speech by House Ritterberg, at the opening of the new military academy. Gretchen’s father emphasised that she must get this right and be more than a continual disappointment to her family.

The new training academy was unveiled; a floating sky fortress powered by crystals. While Gretchen worked on her speech, Cannech and Patrin wandered around, exploring. Cannech noted how the academy had an impressive collection of caged monsters, used to train soldiers how to combat these menaces. Meanwhile, Patrin counselled a man in an impressive uniform who had to give a speech that frankly terrified him.

The speeches were delivered successfully – Gretchen didn’t screw things up, and it turned out that Patrin’s new friend was none other than Prince Rupert von Drachenfels, current ruling prince of Aalban province. At the cocktail party afterwards, Rupert thanked Patrin in person and then became distracted by fascinating magical conversations between Ingrid and Gretchen about high thaumaturgical engineer. However, Rupert soon showed more interested in Gretchen and Ingrid stalked off in anger. She then encountered an arrogant, blue-haired elf who seemed to show contempt for all of the nobility around him. The elf left the gathering and went to the power crystals that kept the floating academy aloft. He said an incantation and the image of a great, abyssal dragon filled the sky. The dragon smashed into the crystals and the academy started to drop the air!

While the assembled wizards quickly kept the academy from falling, disaster threatened the academy as the monster cages broke open. The assembled PCs had to choose between helping out an important noble being attacked by a red dragon, and a group of school children being menacd by a gelatinous cube. The PCs chose to help the school children, and finished of the gelatinous menace. However, the noble died and the red dragon escaped.

The mysterious blue-haired elf died in custody, laughing.

Prince Rupert, shocked by the attack, asked the PCs to investigate rumours of terrorist activities. However, the PCs had other leads they wanted to follow up, including one about an oracle who would answer any question put to her before vanishing!

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The Greatest Prize
Episodes 5 to 7

Cannech was approached by a soldier called von Bek, who said that there was an Alphatian nobleman squatting in a castle in the Aalbanese mountains. The Alphatian gave von Bek’s men food and hospitality for the night, but served him his own men during dinner. Von Bek fled and now wanted vengeance.

The plan was for the Stormwardens to infiltrate the castle, while von Bek’s men attacked during the night on a pre-arranged signal. The Stormwardens approached the castle, where they were given hospitality. The Alphatian seemed like a nice chap, however. Von Bek attacked when the signal wasn’t given, fearing that the infiltration team had been compromised. The Stormwardens fought off von Bek, but the Alphatian, Myrkin, was disappointed that they hadn’t come forward and then dropped them in an elemental puzzle dungeon. The Stormwardens escaped the dungeon but found that Myrkin had been dead for some time.

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The Shadow of Ethengar
Episode 4

In Glantri City, Canneach was enjoying his new business. Meanwhile, Ingrid was summoned before the military, to learn that she was ‘rewarded’ with a new commander of her squad, First Lieutenant Gretchen from Aalban. They were then given the mission to investigate unrest on the Ethengarian border. They found the trading town of Bramyra mostly deserted. Canneach attempted to find out news from the local bank. However, this failed abruptly when Altani caused a ruckus after the dwarf banker refused to serve her port. The banker sicced his green wyrmling dragon on Altani. Canneach dragged Altani out of the bank, the rest of the PCs following. Canneach was left the knowledge that he had broken the strict laws of dwarven hospitality, and there may be repercussions in his future.

Meanwhile, Patrin angered a fortune teller, an oracle of the Moon Dragon, while Ingrid learned some disturbing prophecies from her, including the knowledge that Patrin had inherited a curse of his father’s, and that Ingrid’s plan to rule Boldavia could be achieved with something called the ‘dark radiance’.

The Stormwardens travelled north to a farm, based on the oracle’s advice, finding that it was in the process of being raided by Tajiit clan Ethengarians and that the small half-orc family there had been butchered.

Gretchen attempted to guide the party to the gathering of the Tajiit clan, but succeeded only after being lost on the endless, rolling grasslands.

They were approached by Ethengarians. Ingrid attempted to bluff her way through, but they quickly saw through the party’s disguise and were captured, brought forth before the Tajiit Khan. There, Ingrid was shocked to discover that the Khan’s new advisor was none other than Lord Orlov! Gretchen tricked Orlov into revealing himself as a Glantrian and a fight broke out, that ended with the possessed Khan defeated, and Lord Orlov’s spirit fleeing after Altani slew his body. Ingrid attempted to trap his spirit, but failed.

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Larvik's Island
Episodes 2 and 3

The PCs were ordered to investigate a matter of inheritance. The wizard Larvik had a small pocket dimension in the Elemental Chaos up for grabs, only it was hard to determine his heir. The PCs found one possible heir, an accountant, and investigated the claim. They met two other rivals on the small island – Mattor, an undead wizard, and rival nobel from Bergdhoven. Eventually, they explored the island and determined the Larvik’s lair was the in the island’s centre. They entered the dungeon and worked through various puzzles, culminating in a terrifying fight against an iron golem. Finally, they achieved the inheritance – power of the pocket dimension.

Canneach seized control of the power, while all of the souls trapped in the island were released. Patrin attempted to guide them ‘onwards’, but failed, but Ingrid guided them to the domain of the vampire spirit she had made a pact with.

Canneach collaped the unstable realm and sold the residuum, where he bought himself a dwarvesn smithy in Glantri City.

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Night of the Vampire
Episode 1

The PCs were invited to a wedding in Boldavia by Ingrid’s cousin, Laina Vandevic, who was getting married to a nobleman, Iago Moubotka. Laina had received strange letters from a stalker left on her dressing table, written in blood and warning her not to marry Iago. She hoped that Ingrid could protect her and was unlikely to be involved in the events.

The PCs found Boldavia perpetually under cloud-cover, due to the rule of the vampire prince, Morphail. They spent the first night at the mansion sneaking around. Canneach looked unsuccessfully for secret passages, Patrin chatted to the servants and Altani found an interesting book in the library that was under lock-and-key. She encountered Lord Gustav Vandevic in the library, and found him suspicious. She reported this to Ingrid and Canneach, who staked out the library. They found Lord Gustav opening a secret panel in the wall and reading a book about vampire hunters! Canneach attempted a distraction, but failed. Summoned guardians appeared and spectral hounds patrolled the mansion. Canneach snuck back to his room, while Ingrid had to endure Lord Gustav upbraiding her about keeping her bestial servants under control.

The next day, the PCs entered the tournament. Cainneach won the archery contest, beating an elf, who graciously gave him a bottle of elven wine to show that he was a good sport. Altani failed to win the equestrian events, but only due to her competitor, Lord Vasil Ourosco using a magical phantom steed. Ingrid also met up with her enemy, Lord Orlov, who wished revenge on Ingrid after some dark deeds in their shared past.

That night the PCs attended the dinner and then the masquerade ball. Andrew Vandevic, the bride’s cousin, arrived after going on a hunt with Iago Moubotka. Halfway through the ball, Vandevic attacked Iago, framed the PCs for murder and fled the mansion with Laina. The PCs persuaded their captors that there was an illegal vampire on the loose and they worked out where his lair was. They engaged the vampire in a desperate struggle, but were hard-pressed. Finally, they fled and lured the vampire to running water, where they were able to defeat him. Laina was reunited with her betrothed.

Ingrid found that one of the guests, the tiefling Countess Constantina Brezovo, who had provided some assistance throughout the affair, was in fact a member of the Raven’s Eye, Prince Morphail’s secret police.

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Stuck in the Mud
Episode 0

The PCs were assigned their first mission – assigned for ranging missions in the Great Crater in New Kolland. They met Corporal Irik, a slightly insane kobold, who wanted to give them a real ‘seasoning’ mission. Previous squads of recruits had not returned. The PCs were asked to enter the laboratory of an earth elementalist in the chaos zone, and retrieve the elementalist’s staff of power. They found the bodies of the previous recruits and cut their way through dreaded bullywugs and mud elementals. However, they failed to retrieve the staff and it was sucked into the elemental chaos. More senior squad mages were later despatched to close the portal.

Unassigned Loot

  • Level 2 Magic Item.
  • Level 1 Ritual Scroll.
  • 100 GP worth of Gems.
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