Lords of Whitecliff
Fortes Adventure Journal
Fortes – Character Journal
I’m not usually one for writing down my thoughts, but the events of late have forced me to examine my own mortality.
The tower … I almost died. I could feel my life seeping into the rough stone of the floor, even though I couldn’t see anything.
I don’t know that we’re up to this.
I don’t have time to write any more now … we’re on the run, trying to make it back to Meryl’s house.
Wow, a lot happened since we left the tower. On the way to Merry’s house we were attacked by the darkness … I know that sounds weird, but that’s what it seemed like! It was some type of created creature that was nasty! We defeated it with the help of Kale (along with a cleric and paladin that were out on patrol), but it ate our horses and killed Rick the paladin.
Of course, killing the darkness made the necromancer very unhappy. We ran into him on the road and he had captured Burl, who was “scouting.” Just when the necromancer started talking (why do evil things always give away so much by talking?), Kelly decided she was sick of him and attacked him. I suppose I could have stopped her, but I wasn’t thinking. My “back my friends” mode kicked in and we killed the necromancer right quick. Looking back on it, it might have been a mistake. Hopefully he didn’t have anything important to tell us that only he knew.
We went to the necromancer’s tower and killed the remaining nasties. We’re hanging out here now, planning our next move.
I was so wound up from the fight with the darkness and the necromancer (I hate them!) that I didn’t mention that Rick the Paladin was killed. It was very sad. It happened right in front of me.
Kelly sent a message to her Mom to make arrangements to pick up Rick’s body and to bring us new horses (the darkness ate ours). Surprisingly Kelly’s Mom was the one who showed up! She took the staff that we got off the necromancer.
Speaking of the necromancer’s staff, I had a dream and I think it was about the staff, but I’m having a hard time remembering the dream. I’ll have to ask the others if they know of a way to remember dreams.
After we met up with Kelly’s Mom, I was surprised when Kelly received a message from her (by hummingbird!) telling us we needed to detour and meet her brother. We showed up at the specified location and I had to really hold myself in check. There was a female ogre there fighting several men and I almost jumped in until I realized that it seemed to be a contest and not a true fight. I still didn’t like it, though.
We soon met up with Kelly’s brother, who always rubs me the wrong way. Thankfully he wasn’t going to be staying with us. Instead he delivered a gnome to us … Garik. He’s not bad, for a gnome.
We went to the ogre den, and while it was a bit touchy for a while, proceeded to clear out the first section of the den. Kale did something I haven’t seen him do before. He shapeshifted!
Kale then proceeded to get himself poisoned. Of course, we had to lug him around after that. The next half of the den was even worse than the first half. There were nasty ogres and lots of goblins too. The ogres were a handful, but Kelly shapeshifted (really? I’m getting kind of jealous) into a bear and really took it to them.
We found the items that Tessa was looking for on the chief ogre and brought them to her. She showed us how to find the witch. I guess that is where we’re off to next.
I think I really need to intensify my sword practice. I have a feeling that my swords will be needed in the days to come.
If Kale doesn’t get us all killed, I’m going to kill him. He had the brilliant idea to take the shape of the wizard that we killed (which actually was a pretty brilliant idea)… but then decided to just walk us all right into the room with the witch in it! Of course, he decides to introduce us. Really? Introduce us to the witch! Awesome. Of course, she thinks he’s her henchman so he’s relatively safe.
No one else seemed to want to step up and talk to her, so I decided to. We had an … interesting … discussion. Apparently she (and presumably the others she’s working with) feel that the Lords took their land. And they want it back. Fun.
I tried to get her to come to Whitecliff to talk to the Lords to work something out … really, I was just trying to think of some way to get us out of there. But she’s not having it … I think we’re screwed.
The witch must have decided we weren’t worth spending the effort to exterminate us herself, so she left it to her henchmen. Bad idea!
As the room started to fill up with water (I have to admit, that freaked me out quite a bit!), we fought our way out of the room and into the hall. We worked our way up to one of the side rooms and then Kelly went all spidery and she climbed out a window and up the wall, carrying almost everyone. I climbed up the rope they dangled for me and we made our escape.
Of course, getting away wasn’t that easy! We were chased and attacked. It’s all quite a blur, to be honest. This running for our lives thing is getting quite old.
Kelly sent a message off to Whitecliff while we were making our way to Merry’s house, so hopefully we’ll hear from them soon as to what we’re supposed to do now!
So, the cavalry came … Kelly’s mom was leading troops to take out the witch and her henchmen. Apparently they were pretty successful, though they lost some people. We did pick up a couple of new party members, though … Stig and Hogren Lighthammer joined us. I think they’re going to help us out quite a bit, even if they are Lighthammers.
We got word that there was a blight killing the lands to the south and were asked to go take a look. We travelled down south and indeed, there was a blight. We talked to a tribe of Merrow … I even managed to hold my temper … and they pointed us in the right direction. We found a cave complex where the told us they thought the blight was coming from.
We went in trying to find out who was creating the blight and found the hags. Of course, our stupid sorcerer managed to get separated from us. Luckily he showed up right when we needed him. We managed to survive the hags … well, most of us did, anyway. Garrick was killed … hopefully we’ll be able to get him back home so Mom can resurrect him. We stuffed him in his haversack for the trip home.
After we took out the hags we went back upstairs to rest … unfortunately, our rest was short lived. While we were resting, NIghteyes started barking wildly … he smelled something … foul. We were attacked by a bunch of undead. I HATE UNDEAD. Someone said they were ghasts. Nasty creatures. It took us some time, but we managed to turn or kill them all.
We still had a few areas of the complex to explore, so we did. We found some merrow and again, I managed to hold my temper … I’m not sure what came over me, but they confused me. Normally they want to kill me as much as I want to kill them. But they didn’t want to attack me, so I actually TALKED to them. I’m not sure what I was thinking!
They took us to “Mother” who was ANOTHER Hag … I was worried at first, but she said she wasn’t with her “sisters” and that she was going to fix the blight. Everyone seemed to believe her so we took her at her word.
We decided it was time for us to head home, so we started back towards Merry’s house, eventually making our way back home. It is so GOOD to be home!
It’s been a while since I wrote in my journal. I have never been a prolific writer in the best of times, and the times lately have not been the best.
I have not been sleeping well lately. My nights are overrun with dreams … dreams of fear, dreams of loss … dreams of shame.
I can’t help but question my decision to attack the children … in the heat of battle, it seemed like the right decision, especially with the vampires there. I know that we could have tried to simply knock them out, but when faced with the undead I didn’t have time to analyze the situation … I simply acted.
It tears me up inside.
I don’t think I’ll ever stop second guessing that decision. There’s nothing I can do about it now but resolve to try to not let it happen again, but that doesn’t make it any easier.
The loss of Kelly also eats away at me. I’m sure she’s at peace, but knowing that we lost her hurts. Hassan … makes me nervous.
I can’t wait to get home.
On our way home, we ran into what appeared to be a caravan that had been attacked. Garrick and I scouted the forest to see if we could find the raiders that were attacking trade coming into Whitecliff.
Unfortunately, we were seen by a flying ball of darkness … one that TALKED TO US. Talk about freaking us out. We high-tailed it out of there and ran back to the rest of the party to warn them.
The FBOD was FAST. It landed on top of Garrick before we even knew what hit us. The fight was rough, but we managed to kill the beast. Unfortunately, the commotion awakened the camp to our presence. Looks like we’re in for a long fight.