Carrion Crown ICT

Carrion Crown, Session 31

After cleaning out the lab, the party discovered a skeleton in the Abbey’s closet – or rather, its Library, as they found the body of Oothi. Leaving Murray to continue spooking the guards locked up in the 2nd floor, they descended to the first floor where they found a more Charmed guards gossiping about recent weirdness. Here, Emilia went a little senile, and forget that her entire powerset was focused around solving the problem this scenario presented. While she wandered around and looked at maps, the rest of the party and the Goat of Travail cleaned up the guards. Further exploration of the first floor found a wine closet and a charm that forced interlopers to drink the (probably poisoned) wine. Lukaszc succumbed to the charm, but being a dwarf, only lost the tiny shred of remaining cleanliness he had to being soaked in wine.

Then, the party checked out the carriage house, where a totally ordinary stablehand was shoveling manure. While they almost slipped away without being noticed, Emilia decided to try to spook this clearly human stablehand, who promptly responded by casting magic on them and revealing that he was, in fact, a bad ass Glabzeru demon. The witch is now 0-2.

After talking their way out of the demon fight, they descended to the basement and finally confronted the witches and their blood knight. The blood knight didn’t last long before the dwarf inquisitor, while the witches placed down some fog and started skulking about. It was a confusing fight, with plenty of magical grasping prehensile limbs, Emilia getting confused and mistaking her own eye for a baby, and other general unpleasantness. After the human witch was slain and the vampire witch returned to her coffin, the party dashed off to the stone sarcophagus to stake her only to find the Symbol trap from last session replaced. Savrin and Emilia fled, while the dwarf put an end to the terror of the Abbey once and for all.

Regrouping, the group found a trio of spirit naga, presumably the source of the many charmed guards in the manor. One of them was transformed into hypnotoad in the single act of competency the witch made all session long. The others dropped plenty of fireballs that made the witch take a toasty nap while the Magus and Inquisitor cleaned house.

They returned home afterward, leaving a set of wood golems to maintain eternal vigil over the exsanguination room, and also never discovering a paladin who had been turned into a vampire. The tortured soul fought the hunger for as long as he could, before forcing himself to watch the dawn, all unknown to the merry marauders we call our protagonists.

Back in Caliphas, the party received a letter from the Nosferatu they had freed, confirming that the Whispering Way was indeed trying to restore the Whispering Tyrant, as well as informing them of the likely hideout of the cult. As the curtain closes on Act V of Carrion Crown, are heroes prepare for the final confrontation with the forces of the Tyrant.

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Carrion Crown, Session 30

After properly equipping themselves, our intrepid heroes headed for the Abbey of St. Lymirin. After admiring the orchard, the heroes slipped into the carriage house where they were accosted by powerful Witchfires, the ghosts of hags slain by Oothi, a terrible hag that threatened the region years ago.

After a brief scuffle, they managed to negotiate their way out of the fight and win passage down a secret entrance into the underground of the Abbey. There, a cunning Symbol of Fear trap sent Murray and Emilia fleeing in blind terror. Murray went upstairs and played ring around the rosie with some mercenaries before fleeing across the lake. Emilia accidentally found the lair of one of the weird sisters and her undead blood knight servant. Thanks to the heroism of Lukascz, Emilia was freed from the dread spell and they managed to escape the spells of the witch and the leaden tread of her blood knight champion.

Having lost both the strategic and tactical elements of surprise, the group retreated, rested, and came back with a new method of entry: through the bell tower, flying and invisible. They ambushed the second witch in her lab, failing to slay her familiar, and getting an intimate look at the whirlwind rules with the help of a summoned air elemental. After cowing the charmed guards into terrified submission, the group looted the lab and prepared to descend further into the abbey.

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Carrion Crown, Session 29
Oh! The stakes go >in< the vampires

The group forged ahead with their exploration of the basement of the tailor shop, finding more supplies, empty coffins, full coffins of torporific vampires, and even coffin mimics (now with rogue levels!), the group grew weary of vampires.

Finally, they found Radmir Giovanni’s coffin, and his five guardians. Things went well, then okay, then sideways, then Radmir was finally overwhelmed and staked. The group bound him and took him back to Luvick Siervage, who had the traitor tied to the highest peak in Caliphas with magical chains to await the dawn.

Also in the tailor’s shop they found papers indicating that the court intrigue angle was a put on, to throw investigators off the trail. The real driving force behind the plot are sister witches at the Abbey of St. Lymirin north of the city.

Also, Evgenya extracted her first deed from each of the group. After drinking Lukascz’s blood, her mouth and throat blistered. His ego grew three sizes that day.

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Carrion Crown, Session 28
Mercs in the attic, grapple vamps in the basement

The group cleaned up after the warehouse demon/grapple vamp fight, then proceeded to sweep the ground floor for all of the interesting tailor’s stores and fitting rooms they could find.

Upstairs, the brainwashed human mercenary day guards kept trying to escort them from the premises (that bull rush over the balcony is a lawsuit waiting to happen). And those crossbows were actually used effectively.

Next, the basement, where more grapple vampires met energy drain prevention. Emilia being grappled and blood drained was the best the undead could hope for, and even that didn’t go well for them.

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Carrion Crown, Session 27
Do you have this in a size... gaaaah!

The group slept all day after their first encounter with Radmir Giovanni. Next, they went back to the Vampire Underground to report their findings to Desmond Kote, and to see his collection of stakes used against the vampiric murder victims.

does a little search for Radmir Giovanni, the tailor. His shop in the Vampire Underground was empty, but had papers linking the vampire deaths to a power play among the city’s nobility.

Proceeding to Radmir Giovanni’s above-ground shop, the group broke in the back door, banged about a bit, then set off two encounters at once. Warehouse demons summoning more demons, and mannequin grapple vamps for everyone!

But then the group was victorious. <sad>

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Carrion Crown, Session 26
where we all learn how much energy drain sucks

The group left the audience chamber of Vampire Prince Luvick Siervage, and set about the Vampire Underground, looking for clues.

There was much talking to, and insulting the sensibilities of, Lady Evgenya. Much was learned of the nature of vampire thralls.

Next, the group examined the stakes from prior attacks collected by Desmond Kote. They all appeared to be furniture legs of the same style sharpened. That style is old, but these were reproductions. There are only a couple of places in Caliphas that could do such work, but the some newly-freed vampire thralls walked by.

Following the thralls to another part of the Underground, the group saw a bloody drug deal go down, then tried to confront the dealers as non-confrontationally as possible. So the dealers left. A sample was gained by some money, sticky fingers, and a victimless crime.

The sample was quickly tested, showing its properties, and that it is highly addictive to vampires, because the drugged out, masterless thralls weren’t a dead give away.

Back to Lady Evgenya, who far too quickly agrees to be bait for the murderer. Then after the “Lady” is attacked, the counter-ambush is sprung. THEN, it is realized that a little more research on vampires and their attacks before launching this plan would have been a good idea. The leader became mist-ifying, but three of his helpers are captured. Savrin is contemplating a life very far from this new one he chose.

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Carrion Crown, Session 25
Swashbuckling is fun for everyone

In the basement of the Haraday Theater, at the back of the Vault of the Caliphas chapter of the Esoteric Order of the Palatine Eye, the group finds the gargoyle statue with the same markings as the Moribund Key.

The group prepared themselves, then aligned the markings on the key to the markings on the statue, revealing a programmed illusion, giving a bird’s-eye tour of an older Caliphas, before finally focusing on a building known as the Quarterfaux Archives.

The Archives is a disused tower that was once a repository of knowledge. the party discovers the tower unoccupied, but finds a new ally against the Whispering Way, the dhampir, Quinley Basdel. Quniley’s mother was one of the vampire’s mysteriously murdered in Caliphas lately, and he came in search of the Whispering Way looking for clues, but The Way have been gone for at least two months.

Quinley then lead the group to the Vampire Underground through a route he thought was safe. Evidently, new security upgrades, and a higher level of paranoia had the group combating the bat-form vampiric guardian of that entrance and her huge carnivorous plant. Flying spellcasters suck.

Upon getting past the crazed vampire/druid, the group talked their way into the inner sanctum of the cities vampire population, through a demonic chapel and its inquisitor Desmond Kote (where some inappropriate statue action occurred), and to an audience with Luvick Siervage, ruler of all vampires in the city.

Siervage negotiated with the group that they help him stop the murderer of his people, and he will help them find the Whispering Way. He gave them rings as tokens to identify his permission to be in the Underground. He also said that they had a suspect in custody, the nosferatu Ramoska Arkminos, but he had not revealed anything yet.

Kote revealed that lady Evgenya Zunaida was increasingly paranoid, as the killer seemed to be targeting the vampires with the most thralls, and her bound was the largest group remaining. The former thralls of the slain vampires were also behaving erratically.

Siervage makes it clear that when the killer is found, he be brought to Siervage himself for justice, then dismisses you to begin your investigation.

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Carrion Crown, Session 24
One thing about living in Caliphas I never could stomach; all the damn vampires.

The group said goodbye to sleepy, befuddled, inbred Ilmarsh, and back on the road with their wagon and unanimated party members. Through sleepy Thrushmoor and on to capital Caliphas they rode, only to be stopped by a headless rider, his nightmare steed, and three ghoulish wolves. Emilia and Murray needed fresh underclothes, but otherwise the group fought them off successfully. Upon the rider they found a bizarre amulet designed to unlock dark, mysteries. A Moribund Key, if you will.

Once in Caliphas, it took the group a while to formulate a plan on how to find an inn (and the Esoteric Order of the Palatine Eye. They also did some shopping, some janitor bothering, and Lukascz made a new friend in the city watch.

That watch captain was investigating a headless corpse in an alleyway. after going up to the roof and finding two piles of ash with wooden stakes within, the body was moved from the alley, and it turned to ash when being struck by the sun.

The group visited the headquarters of the Esoteric Order of the Palatine Eye, annoyed the chapter head, but made friends with the librarian (who didn’t know what was in his own library). Upon researching the Raven’s Head mace, no more could be found as to its properties, but there was much in its background. Researching the Key showed its many powers, plus the ability to find and unlock the secrets of the Whispering Way.

One such oddity is a gargoyle statue tucked in the corner of that very archive…

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Carrion Crown, Session 23
The Three Amigos vs. Trees From Space

The party retreats to the surface and learns more about simian anatomy than any of them ever cared to. After a night’s rest and thus regaining all their most powerful spells an abilities, Emilia, Lukascz, and Murray all descended to the bottom of the lake once more to put an end to this fishy business once and for all.

Returning to the chamber they had fled from, they repotted the telepathic plant from before, tragically killing it right before meeting the Mi-Go for the first time. The Mi-Go decided they needed some more practice before their surgery examinations, but discovered that it takes far more than one vivisection to get to the center of a Dwarf Inquisitor. Then the horrible vertical mouthed multi armed not purple people eater showed up and almost ate Murray, who saved himself through clever alchemy while Emilia bravely ran away and Lukascz unveiled the mighty goat nightmare of travail! Then, even more Mi-go showed up only to be murdered by Lukascz and confused by bats.

The party advanced and discovered a brain room, and decided to leave it be after the only semi-decent Use Magic check in the party got uppity and left the room. From there, they found the Mi-Go’s garden, where Lukascz learned about mulching engines and a Mi-go stole one of Murray’s bombs and ended up blinding everybody except Emilia, who found the situation highly amusing.

Finally, they came to the surgical dome, only to discover the erstwhile Black Rider undergoing some experimental surgery and in desperate need of a second opinion. Emilia turned into ants and helped Lukascz chop up more space fungus, while the Black Rider suddenly got a bad case of “portal-for-an-Elder-God-itis.”

Things got tense here, as Lukascz got wrapped up in the roots of the problem, Murray got knocked out, and Emilia had to burn a card to stop being ants and actually do something useful. Then, Lukascz remembered he had to win just one for the Gipper – I mean, Torag, and saved the day, banishing the Elder God and leaving the party with the Rider’s possessions, including the long sought after Sea Sage Effigy and the magical mace it was supposed to be swapped for. Score one for our heroes.

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Carrion Crown, Session 22
Where the plants can't get their questions answered

The group continued ahead, deeper into the skum home caves, working toward their goal of the Black Rider, the mayor, and the mysterious dome.

Entering the former breeding chambers, the group ran across many skum altered by unorthodox experiments, now using those chambers as a waiting room until they go on guard duty. One of the skum unleashed a bomb of ash and blamed it on Emilia. The group eventually defeated the skum, after a good long while of ashy frustration.

Next up, a telepathic plant tried to communicate with the group, and then got scared. Fortunately for the group, they split up, with Murray wandering into the skum temple to Dagon which had recently undergone changes and started another combat, so the scared plant just ran away and stopped annoying them. Poor Emilia.

In the temple, the skum high priest and two guards fell quickly to the group’s collective onslaught. The group collected their “offerings to Ulaa” (including a holy mace) and decided they had exhausted their resources and to return to the surface.

On their way back to the submersible, the group encountered a wandering patrol and also the damage from the crushing pressure. The last of the skum fell to the group’s pogrom, Murray and Emilia succumbed to the pressure, but were bailed out by Lukascz and his magic helmet. And His Magic Helmet! AND HIS MAGIC HELMET!

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