The Wolves of Dor Maleer

The limb taker cometh
Watch out the barbarian is taking legs at the hip

There before the giants lay the doorway to the crucible. The massive hall beyond the great ornate door is riddled with elemental traps and pits that open and close. they manage to cross the hall of traps and only a few of them are hit by the blasts of elemental force. The next obstacle are living 22’ tall iron statues armed with elemental shields and weapons. The Cleric sends one to the plane of water and the rest are defeated during a massive combat that leaves the room heavily damaged. The Battle is not the worst they have had, perhaps Geru has run out of defenses, or perhaps he is saving them for the final battle. Beyond the next door is their worst nightmare given form, 8 old dragons 2 large white, 2 large blue, 2 large green and 2 large red, beyond them are 4 colossal ancient Wyrms 1 Blue , 1 White, 1 Green, and 1 Red. The battle is epic the Barbarian uses the vorpal axe to it’s deadliest effect. A dark and grim harvest of limbs is claimed by its gore slicked blade, all fight with fierce determination. Many almost fall to the dragons relentless assault of breath weapons , claws , wings , teeth, and the shock strikes of their mighty tails they kill the first wave and are instantly attacked by the 4 massive Wyrms. Their power is incredible they wield magic as well as the rest of the formidable attacks of the younger dragons. The Fighter and Barbarian fight with great strength magic is used to great effect the cleric is forced to overuse the censer to keep them in the fight. The strain on the censer is great and it appears ready to crack in half but they finally manage to slay the last of the dragons. It has taken it’s toll on all of them but this is not to be the last battle beyond the next door is a stair that leads to a massive 2 headed iron golem , it has 2 massive swords and it breathes a gas that paralyzes any it touches. The vorpal axe can not help them and many are turned to stone. Once again magic is needed to keep them going, at long last the party lays it low. It is a great battle but still not the last of the night , that honor falls to the great 2 Headed Demon Prince Demogorgon demogorgon.jpg his merest touch causes disease his gaze can hypnotize or drive mad and his tail lash can strip away experience as easily as it does flesh. The battle is as fierce is the others the great demon prince attacks often and without pause he drives many mad and claims some with his other gaze. He gates in a balor to fight by his side he strips the barbarian of 4 levels but as quick as he can deal his terrible damage their cleric is dealing with it but he is burning through his magic. The Demon prince is resisting all spells that strike him , even the great vorpal axe that has slain so many this night fails to do more than injure him but for a desperate spell from the cleric it may have won the day but with only a 5% chance of success the Cleric slays the great princes mortal aspect the balor fights on but also falls to the party. Before them lies the final doorway with what they have faced what in the realms could Geru have waiting for them? The end is coming but whose?

Seriously you throw those, THROW.........I don't think he gets it
maybe he should switch professions or something

By now getting thrust forwards then back in time is becoming commonplace. Memories are becoming clearer the haze is lifting ,most importantly they are identifying with who they are in both times. Information is being recalled but not perfectly, Minarik Ironwine and his bard’s knack for knowing scraps of information are helpful and they uncover the name Heltan. As the story goes Heltan a descendant of Geru’s has been working to avenge the death of Geru. It appears he has taken hold of the crucible to retrieve the Weapons of the Moon ,ancient artifacts of great power protected by the druids. Why he wants them is anybody’s guess, it appears as though he already has one of them as far as the party knows he could have them all. If that were the only issue it would be problem enough but much to their dismay they make a much more alarming discovery Kostchtchie is attempting to return to the place where he was defeated to exact bloody vengeance on the group that laid him low. The great demon lord hits Venerick Hilts with a glancing blow that nearly kills him but he cannot manifest fully enough to follow up on his attack. His form fades back to the maelstrom of chaos from which it formed. Left behind is a summoning circle surrounded by powerful demonic glyphs. “Rabbit” attemts to decipher them and is nearly driven mad for the effort. The party manages to calm her and they move on, the crucible is not done testing them this night. An area of thick soil floor that contains a chwidencha or legged horror an ambush predator is waiting but the party is on guard and through skill and a little luck they manage to drive the beast off before it can do more than annoy them. The next denizen of the maze is far more dangerous and is a guardian creature set to keep a cache of minor magic items safe, A stone construct shaped like a door attacks as they try and open it. Initially it has success as it turns Dredarious Waridon to stone with it’s petrification gas but they not only manage to save their friend but also defeat the guardian and loot the chest. Following the maze they end up in a grotesque review room with massive pillars made of calcified children’s remains being kept animated by Heltan to sing his praises. Also in the room is a great throne made from the bones of a great beast, upon entering the room Dredd decides that this profane torture of the weak and innocent must stop. He is engaged by a creature that forms from a sickly black smoke with red and green light pouring from it. It resembles a human in only the sense that it has 2 arms , 2 legs and a head. It attempts to bring the children to life to kill them but the paladin will not allow it he begins to pray to Pholtus for divine help. Not satisfied the creature animates the relief on the ceiling of a dragon with rider, it lands on the floor and begins belching sheets of stone. Pholtus answers the prayer and the false life that was animating everything is driven away but not before everyone is struck by the beast’s breath weapon. The paladin’s prayer also gives them a case that contains 5 healing potions a day that replenish at dawn they must be used immediately after being taken out or they fade away. The room is searched and a secret door is found it leads down a set of stairs where the first confrontation with Heltan’s guards takes place. The guards are well armed and good with a blade it is a long battle that is hard fought by both sides, in the end The party stands triumphant over the slick wet bones of Heltan’s undead guard force. As they begin resting the feeling of vertigo seizes them as it has so many times now and the years begin to fall away in a dizzying rush to the past. The giant’s are nearing the center of the maze and a final showdown with Geru how close are the party to Heltan and what does he have to do with anything. Time will tell.

Did someone say Demon Lord
you are one ugly Mother......

As they arrive back in the time of the giants they remember the summoning circle in the room The Illusionist tries to decipher it’s secrets and for his troubles he has all his magic items disenchanted. Although that is a bad break it has bought them the knowledge that the circle was used to summon 2 things 1 recent 1 not so recently the older of the 2 was to the infernal planes, the more recent was to the plane of dreams the home of the Quori. With that hard won knowledge they press on, the very next door is cold wrought iron with wards to keep the demon lord Kostchtchiealumni_kostchtchie_fc1.jpg Knowing he enslaves Frost Giants the Barbarian and Mage {both of whom are Frost Giants } decide that he must be driven back to his own plane. In an epic confrontation they finally manage to lay low the Demon Lord. The spoils go to the victors and they are rich indeed in both coin and magic items. The night however is still young and they are eager to end this, to end the madness tearing time apart at the seams. They follow the halls down to a set of stairs and head down and then follow the intersection to the left which leads to a massive cavern , a cavern they had seen before. The ancient White Dragon known as Chasafal “Aussir Litrix” or Chasafal “the White Armor” he is Colossal in size and and one of the most powerful of his race. They face the dragon with the same steely resolve they showed against it’s rider. The beast gives them the fight of their lives but in the end they stand triumphant atop it’s lifeless body, which they begin to take trophies from. They are now in possession of a dragons hoard which they mark and leave to be divided at the conclusion of the task at hand. The recovery of the Hammer and they defeat of the man responsible. Just as they get ready to resume they feel the now very familiar feeling of vertigo and they feel the rush of entering back to their proper bodies but for 1 day in a past they never knew these 5 were legendary , Slayers of a Demon Lord and his Ancient Colossal Dragon Mount. Perhaps the tide is finally turning but even if it isn’t this is a big win the kind of thing that stays with you for the rest of your life or in this case lives.

That is just fighting dirty
Curses foiled long do these things last anyway?
The reunion does not go smooth. To say suddenly re-emerging from a rip in time from being a giant to back to your own consciousness is hard enough to grasp but to then be confronted by 2 of your own that were slain….that is a whole different level of awkward. Some (“Rabbit”) take things better than others (Venerick Hilts) but on the whole they all agree it will be good to travel together once more. Nar Trig leaves knowing that Dred and Min will investigate the rift that is affecting “The Shroud” as he calls it. The maze takes them in many directions and there are strange markings all over the place but Minarik Ironwine reminds them why “Bards are awesome” . He deciphers the marks, using the new knowledge the party will be aware of dangers that were encountered by whoever left the marks so long ago. These help them avoid a well defended area which contained 5 giants working at a mysterious machine with a giant bellows. “Rabbit” notices that the giants may be infected with some creature as one of them has a reptilian tail coming from under its arm but its point of origin is inside the arm not under it. while back-tracking from the dead end they run into a patrol of half-living mercenaries known to both Min and Dreddarious as “The Lords of Dust”. The battle last longer than any would like and although the Party is victorious the cost of the win is high both Venerick Hilts and Minarik Ironwine are cursed, and with no real definite means to remove it they will have 2 members hampered magically for quite some time should an appeal to Pholtus to intervene fail. They also find a sarcophagus buried in the floor. After rigging a pulley system using one of Ven’s hidden talents they manage to lift it and Rabbit is nearly killed by it’s wards. The magic coming from it is intense and the box inside is the most ornate woodwork they have ever seen. There is a message inside that reads “- And from the deeps there arose a mighty beast of many eyes and many limbs and the beast from the darkness did set upon the light of the world with hateful thirst and unnatural hunger- The Scissor I Maorok The Frost Blooded do entomb for the next time it is needed as we all agreed it is what should be done. I fulfill my promise, may those I saw use this rightly” The sword is gone but there is one item left inside the case that is only found due to Rabbit’s insistence to search the interior of the case. A massive scroll the spell it contains will return the sword to it’s proper size. It is decided to copy the spell and destroy the original, then they move on down more labyrinthian hallways finally ending at a door with no handle. Before they can decide what shall be done about this new obstacle the now familiar feeling of vertigo takes hold of them and they black out. they are getting ever closer to the center of the maze but how will the end play out. Now that Min and Dredd are back but part of Nar trigs forces who do they serve are they themselves or is there more to this than anybody can guess at. Time is quickly running out and they better know the answers to make the right choices because soon it will be time and how they decide could change the course of things in the Past,Present and Future. we can only hope they make the right one. For all our sakes
We're getting the band back together!
You look well for a dead guy
Much has transpired since we last spoke so I will fill you in on what you may have missed. Many battles were fought and not all without cost but that is the life of a group such as this. The Jumps between the far past and the present are confusing and even when in their own time shadows of what have been , will be , and even from other dimensions invade with more frequency. What do they mean. If anyone knows they are not saying. As of this moment what we know for sure is that the group has struck the first blow against the Quor and Daelkyr alliance. In a bid to alter the past the Daelkyr had sent an agent back through time disguised as a goblin shaman, rallying the tribes,telling them that the dragons long time allies of the giants could not be trusted. He was meant to provoke the goblins so when the Great Black Dragon approaches the goblins to teach them the magic that would turn them into the first druids they would reject it. With that accomplished the magic of closing planar rifts would be lost to all but the dragons. In the present the dragons keep to themselves so there would be no one to interfere with their plans to enter the portals into the prime material plane and slowly take over. But the giants our heroes inhabit did not take the bait, with this simple act the timeline was preserved. One of the hard lessons they have learned is the fact that the illusionist one of them inhabits is using magic that lingers for thousands of years. Every spell he casts is warped with some form of primitive intelligence granted by an unknown source, the crucible is not easy to get to even for giants. They are close now close to the end of the road the end game is set in motion soon all will be over the changes between the now and the far past. As they return to their own time they are shocked to be met by 2 familiar faces Dredarious and Minarik ………….How can this be they saw them die what does all this mean and where will the party go from here is anyones guess but one thing is for sure The rules just changed and both sides are betting that the next time they meet it will be the last time.
The Crucible entered
Did That really just happen or are we dreaming?

They find themselves back ,back in the time they know but something eats at the back of their minds, a hazy distant echo of a memory. They have been here before or at least that is the way it seems. The Crucible , the great maze of legend. Built by drow and elven slaves for their giant overlords the final resting place of the Titan Hammer. Now it is just a ruin that exists in the holdings of an ancient dwarven kingdom. A cursed land that none have been able to tame. Not a soul has been able to fathom why it is so. This is the way to the tear in the world , the way to the Hammer ,the focus of the Quori efforts. And this is where they must go, the start of it all the location of the first betrayal of the prime plane. It is hard to walk in the footsteps of giants and even harder when the very battles they fought leave a shadow that even time seems incapable of erasing. The bones of the ancient dead rise again to stop them, and worse than that is the fact that as they proceed the past is trying to force its way back into this reality. There is no stopping the rips that seem to desperately want to be back in the now. Each tear brings the past back for a moment and they are getting stronger. As the past washes over those unfortunate enough to succumb to them they return unnaturally aged , but they are witness to events from a new perspective. Most of their time in the crucible this night is spent retracing as best as they can remember the footsteps of their “other” selves but in a maze built for giants even going down a hall takes time. It will not be easy to go through this place for the magic that lingers is so ancient none in this era know how it works, the simplest of spells are deadly and more dangerous than modern magic. Many times during the night they are beset by time disruptions involving Geru himself clad in the trappings of a druid he attacks with minions from past be them undead remnants of a battle fought 40,000 years ago or beings from that time brought into the present. Both fights are hard but most importantly both fights are won by our heroes. but even as they rest and ready themselves for the next room it happens again. That feeling of vertigo as they are unceremoniously ripped from the bodies they posses and inserted back into the bodies of the 5 Giants sent to stop Geru and retrieve the Titan Hammer. How much will they remember now that they are back in the time of Giants and will that knowledge help them or hinder them. Time will tell but as our heroes are starting to learn Time is not as set as we would like to believe and what they do in both times matters. Which timeline will emerge as dominant, what will our heroes change during this trip to the past. But the single biggest question what do the Quori gain from any of this?

Overheard at 4am Fighter needs F&%K badly
does a good stiff mace insertion count?

Where to go is the very first decision of the new day. The only constant is the mountains, shall they go to the great city of Korunda’s Gate or to the monastic temples of Onatar’s Fist, After a spirited discussion the decision is made that the best way to the tear in the world is to head to the great city , it is hoped that from there not only gear and provisions but information as well can be gathered. Next shall they take the main road or stick to the less traveled smaller trails. Another spirited debate later they decide to head down the main road up the mountains, even on a well used trail the ascent is hard. The mountain seems determined to wear them down like the famed smiths in Korunda the mountain batters them with harsh winds and unforgiving ground that beats at their legs and feet with each step. After walking for a full day they see a small roadside lodge, It is run by a follower of the Wanderer a god not known to the group but seems not unlike Fharlanghn. The keeper politely goes about his business of maintaining the roadside inn free of charge only stopping twice to talk to Presto and then to Rabbit. While resting each member of the party has a dream more vivid than they have ever had before. The dream is strange because each of them is in the dream but they are not themselves, and they are arguing with others they know but don’t know about a man named Geru and his involvement or lack thereof in the theft of the Titan Hammer from the Lord of the Long Keep. None of this means anything to them, the following morning they discover how the old dwarf manages to keep the place provided for, the dwarves trade provisions for his work as a book binder and restorer. They continue into the mountains when they are ambushed by a group of mountain loris dirty creatures with a deadly toxic bite. The battle is fierce and many are bitten but only Venerick comes close to succumbing to the poison. After the battle they rest and heal, pushing on they continue the climb until at last another roadside inn. This one however could not be more different than the last, it is loud and boisterous and it’s services are most decidedly not free. Again the night is plagued by dreams of these people who are them but not them. One 4am wake up call later and they are on their way to Korunda’s Gate. The gate is a massive city and the party separates each seeking what they feel they will need for the journey into the tear. With the preparations in order, on the 2nd day they set off for the tear. The journey to the tear is uneventful but the door to the Ruins of Nordrunhold give dire warnings of what lie beyond. The door is locked but they get it open and proceed into the cursed area left to ruin by the dwarves of the area. Beyond the door is a room filled with undead dwarves. The battle is over quickly and as they recover from their wounds the world distorts and spins wildly before they know it the Quori finally reveal their plan, They find themselves inhabiting the bodies of a group of giants from the long forgotten kingdom of Xen’drik 40000 years in the past. The very group that went after Geru, but if the legends are true because of him the Quori were able to invade the first time. Why send them here, why send them to this time there must be a plan and whatever it is they must not let the Quori succeed. What changes will be wrought by their actions or lack there of it seems even time is not immune from the tampering of the masters of dreams. Whatever the game is the stakes have just gone way up…..what will they return to if they fail here, what indeed.

Only the truly Brave eat the Boars apple

And we are back to the log. My apologies for missing some but time is not my friend sometimes. Ok back to it. We pick up with our new band adventuring deeper into the keep in the pocket dimension, along with several other groups. The search reveals a hall of light which reacts to anything in the hall. The group makes the decision not to go down the hall for rear of what it may do to them. Onward to the House of Sabers. Upon opening the door they find the room is filled with crates going to Dor Maleer and barrels going to the Eldeen Reaches. The crates are filled with a RNA retrovirus bio-toxin called the Yellow Death and “Rabbit” has touched it, swiftly the plague rushes into her body and she is nearly killed by it. The after effects are terrible but she will survive. Another decision, this time to leave the room and try to find a way to the Northwest tower and then come back to destroy the crates is made after much discussion. The only way out of the room is a manual lift. After climbing in they go down, but Saven notices that they seem to pass by a floor so they go back and investigate. During the investigation Presto triggers a trap and they are nearly all killed as flaming oil fills the shaft. With everyone on the brink of death they are surprised to awaken in a room with a well dressed man who is not one of the inspired waiting for them to awaken. Upon regaining consciousness He introduces himself as Baron Helian GofflesbyThe_Baron.jpg The Banners he flies are a shield with a broken anvil within, he asks a few questions and then after receiving no answers he leaves. A few moments later they follow and find themselves in a small house on a farm, the room they were in could not be part of this house and upon checking they find the door they came through does not lead back to the room. They Now Find themselves a world away from Sarlona. Now in the Mror Holds the mountainous home of the great Dwarven Clans they must discover what is happening and where do they go from here. Before they can do any of that however it appears that someone wants them out of the way as mercenaries attack. During the fight the town militia comes to their aid. Can they complete the quest to secure the portals and resist the quori and why have they not been killed outright each time they were defeated. What new perils exist on this new land and what is the tear in the earth they have heard about. Is it really a portal or something far worse. It is almost time for the last piece to fall into place and then the game moves into it’s next stage, but is it it’s FINAL stage?

Saying Goodbye.
When darkness reaches into you, you cannot resist for long

Tonight the party is dealt a pair of blows they may not recover from for quite some time. The moral compass (Dredarious) and the soul (Minarik) of the party fall in battle never to rise. With the paladin and bard dying in battle against 3 major casters the party sits stunned it all started so well. First a battle against a ninja followed by a battle against 4 ogre mages that use symbiote magic then immediately going to battle against 3 major league casters directed by a Dream Master. Although they quickly run into new comrades a monk/psychic warrior and a sorcerer. As nice as it is to have these new people they miss their friends. During all of this they learn that Nar Trig has attacked the south tower and is even now striking deep in the prison. As the battle rages through out they must move with caution or they could be attacked by friend and foe alike. The stakes have now been raised and the dark of the Quori is reaching out to end this resistance once and for all. How long can this new band keep the Quori at bay. With Venerick merging with the Elemental within the sword will he be the same man, the fear is no for already he has turned to chaos the ones that knew him best wonder how long will it be before he changes so much that he can no longer be trusted. Meanwhile “rabbit” also dons a piece of possessed equipment perhaps in hopes of also joining with an elemental. tbc…

When The Hunters Become the Hunted
Rectum it damn near killed em!

After spending time in the storage area to heal and get ready they leave hoping to avoid the Titan and the Seamstress. The next room they find looks to have been hastily deserted. as they search the room they notice it once housed many magic items. All that remains are what seem to be mundane skill wands and rods. Minarik finds a secret passage and when he reveals it’s location to the group he is stabbed in the back by an unknown creature it breaks the blade off in his back and hides also Venerik and Jarinth’s wolf are assaulted by a song of grief and sorrow from an unknown source. They drive off their attackers but Minarik is near death and the wolf is lethargic. The decision is made to move on and they find another room they are attacked again this time much more directly with arrows and a vicious hammer. Again they drive off the attack. Each time they are tested each time it is a different method of attack, during this running battle they encounter another creation of the fleshsmith.
tumblr_m6eodfOXNl1qmg4b2o1_500.jpg It is poisonous and deadly fast but unlike the group that pursues them , it is alone. When it is slain Min finds a hidden cache of armor of bright lavender. It has a slight enchantment when struck it hardens to offer extra protection but at the cost of movement which it thirds. Finally they encounter the other group again, the result is every member of the party is downed. They awaken in a cell with other groups that had been sent by other councils. Finally it is revealed the Inspired are using the groups to be rid of Nar Trigg who is trying to oppose the inspired by keeping the portals closed. They manage to escape the cell and free the others but now they are in a prison in a pocket dimension fighting the Quori on their semi home turf. Things look bleak but they are free and they now know the truth. With the truth finally revealed the true battle can begin.


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