Jonna
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"Live your truth. Express your love. Share your enthusiasm. Take action towards your dreams. Walk your talk. Dance and sing to your music. Embrace your blessings. Make today worth remembering." ― Steve Maraboli
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नमस्ते (Namaste) – I honor the place in you in which the entire universe dwells. I honor the place in you which is of love, of truth, of light and of peace. When you are in that place in you and I am in that place in me, we are one.
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2nd August 2014


Players

GM nemesis13

Ruach played by schizoid
Catríona played by Kattvippa
Caerian played by steerpike65
Fiona played by IvoryThorns
Filian played by derf_red

Continued…

The Beast of Frendian

As soon as we are back from following the Magientists, me and Fiona go knock on Ruach’s door. He opens the door and lets us in. He then tells us what he had discovered. That there will be some sort of ritual in Dearg. Suddenly we can hear a shout “Thieves!” downstairs, so we head there to see what the commotion is all about. It’s Amalia, Joel the Innkeeper’s wife. She looks so worried that I naturally offer our help. She looks at me up and down and says “Right, like you could help us…” I turn around to walk away, but Fiona grabs my arm while talking to Amalia, who seems to believe in her. Amalia tells her three bottles of their finest whiskey has gone missing. When Fiona asks, she tells her which of her staff has access to the cellar and Fiona asks if any of them are into whiskey so much that they would be suspects. Fiona asks to see the basement, so Amalia takes us there. We examine the door lock, there are no signs of lock picking. Amalia tells us it was only a few minutes ago that she noticed the bottles are missing. Fiona asks if we should talk to the people, maybe one of them has misplaced their key. Amalia agrees and so we decide to talk to all of them: Bleuvenn Ghain (the kitchen help), Zai Gareth (the maid) and Jelvestr Morgh (the handyman and stable boy).

At the stones


In the meanwhile, Caerian and Filian are still at Konog’s house. Servana has been very quiet, kicking stones and picking flower petals while waiting for them. As Caerian finally says they should go to the stones, Servana storms off and in about an hour they arrive. There are huge standing stones in the middle, and a circle of smaller stones surrounds them. They also see a stone that might be a ritual stone. Caerian knows it’s not a Demorthen ritual stone, but it looks like something the Demorthens has been using. Filian tries to identify the stones fomr his scientific point of view, but can’t really. Servana says the stones has to be at least 1 000 – 1 500 years old. They also look like they were originally from this area. Filian presses his ear against one of the stones and hears the heartbeat. It’s a very, very slow heartbeat. It seems that the stones in this are share the same heartbeat, the heart rate and the sounds seem to differ in different areas.

Servana is back to her normal self and keeps talking a lot. She says some of the stones have a coppery taste to them. When Caerian looks at her, she says “Oh, you don’t have to lick the stone, just be near them and you will taste it”. The smaller stones aren’t giving the heartbeat, but all of the bigger ones do. Cearian tires to think, but he has never heard of a ritual that would be fusing life with stones. Filian walks around the ritual stone, trying to see blood or knife marks on it. He thinks that a sacrifice might have happened here, to get the life force from the sacrificed person to seep into the stones. Caerian is mildly annoyed by that suggestion. No matter how much Filian tries, he cannot find any blood or knife marks on the ritual stone.

Caerian inspects the shape of the heartbeat stones. They seem to jutting out of the ground and obviously they have been worked on, to get that shape in them. It looks like the stones used to have very sharp points, time and nature have made them rounder. There are two circles connecting at one point and a dot in the bigger stones’ circle. The dot is the ritual stone. Servana says this rock formation is unique compared to the other formations. She says she ought to know, she’s been doing a lot of pattern searching.

At Golden Hearth

Ruach tries to talk Fiona out of this investigation which clearly isn’t very important. Fiona asks if Ruach has a problem with this and he replies “No, but remember the ritual?” Fiona ignores him and walks to Bleuvenn. I look at Ruach and shrug, then follow Fiona. When we get to the kitchen, we are just in times to see Bleuvenn put a bowl on Fiona’s hands, saying “hold this.” and hurrying around the kitchen, doing something. I snigger a bit, I bet that’s a first time Fiona’s ever held a bowl meant for preparing food. When Bleuvenn gets back, she shows Fiona a key around her neck. She says Amalia checks the door in every 15 minutes. She says she keeps the key around her neck because Amalia is an awful person and is always checking up on everyone. She couldn’t deal with it if she lost the key and Amalia found it out. Next we talk to Zai who has the key, but has never used it. She says she’s not suppose to use it. I tell her to keep her eyes open for any extra whiskey bottles. She seems to be very happy about snooping around in people’s rooms. Maybe I should not have given her a valid reason.

Ruach talks to Jelvestr and keeps it in a level of a small talk. He asks “What about some whiskey since it’s so hard to work here?” Jelvestr replies “Are you out of your mind? Never when I’m working”. Since Ruach doesn’t smell whiskey in his breath, he assumes he’s innocent. When he reports to Fiona, she immediately asks what Jelvestr said about his key. Ruach slaps his forehead and says he completely forgo to ask about the key. Fiona just walks past Ruach and asks Jelvestr about the missing bottles. He says he doesn’t know anything about those bottles and as far as Fiona can tell, he’s being honest too. He says he has given his key back to Amalia a few months ago. He continues telling how he likes to drink during the evening and therefore it’s a good thing he doesn’t have the key anymore.

Suddenly Amalia approaches me and asks why we are harassing my workers. I can’t believe my ears and I tell her she asked us to help with the investigation. She asks if we have any information and when I say we don’t, she says “No, I didn’t think so”. At that point I’ve had it, I just storm off toward our rooms. How Joel can ever stay married to that… woman… is completely beyond me. Ruach stays behind to talk to her. Apparently he’s got a patience of a tortoise.

At the stones

Back at the stones Filian pours some water on the stones, something is inscribed to the stones. Servana had already made copies of the inscriptions. Caerian can recognize only one symbol and that says “Feon”. Some of the symbols look a bit like something the Demorthens use, but probably inscriptions are very very old, as he can’t really read it. Filian tries to decipher it too, but he can’t. So he decides it’s a good idea to cut his finger and put some blood on the stone, to see if it reacts in any way. At that point Caerian is a bit more than little annoyed and asks “What is going on?” Filian explains and says he thought that these stones pre-date Demorthen. Caerian replies “As long as you don’t imply Demorthens are sacrificing…” They both search the ground around the stones and Caerian checks if he can see a sign of a chamber under the stones, but doesn’t find such thing. Filian isn’t any luckier, as he doesn’t find anything either.

They both remember Alawn had activated the stones 30 years ago. Filian asks if Servana has found Alawns hut, but she hasn’t. Filian asks if she has found Alawn’s Ionnthen, but she hasn’t found her either, she left about a year ago. Servana tells them that the Ionnthen is only 25 years old, so she wasn’t even born yet when Alawn did the ritual.

Suddenly Filian feels a strong need to tell Servana everything about what her brother Evarzeg has done to the poor children of Garath. He starts telling about the sad happening in Garath and Caerian gives Filian a good, sturdy punch on his shoulder and says “Filian, always joking. Quit winding her up!” and tries to laugh it off. Servana just tells Filian Evarzeg would not do that. Ever. Although, she wouldn’t put it past some people that he is working with. Servana then tells them the Ashen Yards is a research facility and they do some very unethical things, their work is questionable at the very best. Caerian asks Servana if she knows the names of the leader’s of the Ashen Yards. She tells them she doesn’t know the leaders’ names, but both Nolwen and Jacut are working there. Figures. She also says Nolwen and her aren’t in the best of terms. Servan keeps then going on about how she can’t believe her brother would do something like that, even though he is a doctor of medicine. After that they start heading back to the Golden Hearth.

At Golden Hearth

As soon as we are all together again, Filian fills us in with all they’ve learned at the stones. Filian remembers Servana has always been as enthusiastic about anything she has been studying. Then Filian goes all silent and in some deep thoughts. Suddenly his face lights up as words start pouring out of his mouth “Lady Aeoda went to East from here, Alawn died in East, outside the protective circle, the magientists went East too. There has to be something in the East!” We are all excited about finally having a direction to go from here and decide to get some sleep and head East in the morning.

We wake up for a woman screaming downstairs, hysterically. We get out of our rooms and see someone being carried to the first floor. Joel and Jylvestr are carrying unconscious Nolwen toward her room. Servana opens their door and Caerian tells her to empty Nolwen’s bed, quickly. Caerian doesn’t find any wounds on Nolwen, but she’s very pale, her pulse is racing and she’s sweating. Caerian checks her tongue, no sign of poison. He and Filian come to the same conclusion at the same time: Nolwen is in shock.

In the meanwhile I go out to check on the caernide with Fiona. The poor thing has been ridden so hard it’s a miracle it’s still alive. I take it inside and give it a proper brushing, first using some dry hay to get the excess sweat off. I feed the animal and give it water. While I’m taking care of it, I notice that there aren’t any saddle bags, which seems a little weird. Fiona remembers she had heavy looking saddle bags, so it looks like she’s dropped them in order to go faster.

We get some breakfast and at sunrise we go check on Nolwen. She’s still unconscious. Caerian slaps Nolwen, Servana is very upset about that and shushes Caerian out, saying Nolwen needs to rest. Caerian happily leaves the room.

Where the Tracks Lead

Before we go, we talk to Jylvestr, he remembers Nolwen having screamed something that something awful had happened to Maden and Joren. She might have encountered the Beast of Frendian. Supposedly it resides in the Eastern forest, none has encountered it and lived to tell about it. The stories tell it has three amber eyes and it’s been present about 100 years already. We start tracking Nolwen’s caernide’s tracks and it’s pretty easy for me to see that the caernide had been going for top speed at least for few hours, so Nolwen must’ve been pretty far.

The tracks first lead to East. It’s pretty obvious where she came from, she was galloping the whole time. We travel through a valley and the landscape is almost breathtakingly beautiful. The closer we get to the border of the valley, the less it seems beautiful and even though the sun is shining, its gets colder. Then we realize we’re leaving the protected are of the stone circle. We look at each other in silence and keep going. We’re not galloping, to save our caernides’ strength, so it takes us double the time it took for her to ride last night. The countryside turns uglier and darker all the time.

We arrive at a small clearing, the sun is setting and it’s not beautiful at all, like back at the Golden Hearth. It’s dreary and we realize the only source of light is leaving us for the next 12 hours. Not a pleasant thought. We’re about 7 hours away from the protective circle. So we make a camp and keep guard in shifts.

Learning Things I Could’ve Lived Without Knowing

Next morning we push on and in about three hours we arrive at a small hut. The hut looks abandoned and there’s a body of a caernide and a man completely shred to pieces. I try to see tracks of the Beast of Frendian, but I can’t see any. So we decide to take a look in the hut. It looks like a slaughter house, there are body parts and entrails everywhere. One body had been ripped to shreds and someone had tried to reassemble the body. The only thing still missing is a torso and a head on a shelf. Other parts had been stuffed together. We can see two arms, two legs and one head. There’s no telling who’s face it is, it is so badly damaged. There are too few entrails in the room and too little blood, even though there’s a lot as it is. The body parts have been here for a few days. It also looks like something very large has been squeezing through the doorway.

Ruach finds something that looks like twigs. I’ve never seen anything like that before. Caerian tastes the twig, it has a very strange taste. The body outside is completely butchered and killed later than the one inside, maybe last night. All the body parts are present and we can see a blood trail going to the forest. We can recognize the body outside, it’s Jacut. I feel sick, but I keep my calm. Or at least I try to.

We follow the blood trail and about a half an hour later we reach a cave. There’s a lot of blood on the ground and we can see drag marks getting out of the cave, not in the cave. Filian finds no footprints, but there are some weird marks and tracks. Ruach sneaks in, luckily no-one’s home, but he can see body parts and entrails. There’s a torso inside too. Someone has been using this as a temporary shelter, the bed is made out of clothes. There’s also leaves, moss and twigs on the clothing that makes the bed. Filian checks the clothes, they are definitely women’s travel clothes. We see a crest of Seol in the clothes. Caerian says these are possibly the clothes he saw Aeoda wearing when he met her. All the body parts we’ve seen so far, have been male. Ruach checks that nothing around us is moving, not even the birds.

We follow a second blood trail and come to a small clearing and see another male torso. Just the torso, clad in black leather. Filian finds a small journal in its pocket. The journal includes investigative notes, he has obviously been watching the Beat of Frendian or a Feond. There’s a specific mention of three amber eyes. Several notes about the beast being quiet, not moving etc.

Saddest Find

We come to a bigger clearing. It looks like a battle field that used to be a camp site. Dead bodies or skeletons of both men and caernides are everywhere. Looks like they have been lying here for a long time. There are about 20 bodies and it looks like they all died in their sleep. We can see a few crests of Seol and Tulg Naomh. The skeletons have died about nine months to year ago. The injuries here at the camp site look very different from the other bodies’ injuries. It looks like a lot of them got their throats slit or they took a dagger to their backs. Fiona figures out there are four possible spots where someone as important as the Embassador of the King would’ve been in this camp site, to keep her as safe as possible. Only one of those spaces is empty, there’s a very high quality sleeping bag, but no-one in it.

Caerian has a theory that Aeoda is the naked lady and she turns into the Beast of Frendian in regular intervals. Maybe she has been infected somehow. Filian’s theory is that she got scared when they were attacked, went insane and has been living in the cave ever since, roaming the country naked.

Quiet Journey Back And Some Plans

We start back toward Frendian, clearly there’s nothing more we can do here. I find a road for us and we make haste, but can’t make it inside the protective circle in time. So we travel until midnight and arrive back to Frendian, just inside the stone circle. We make a camp and keep guard in shifts again. In the morning we travel back to the Golden Hearth. Amalia is still shouting about the missing whiskey. God I wish that woman would sort out her priorities. Servana sits outside, looking very tired. And Nolwen is awake.

I decide to go talk to Nolwen and take some tea with me to bring her. Filian accompanies me. She says she saw who did it, it was the Beast of Frendian. She says it cannot be described. She says you can only remember the eyes, the three hideous eyes that are glowing in amber. Filian asks about the woman and clearly she knows something, but she isn’t saying anything. She’s acting like a stock up noble lady. Filian tells her we were at the camp site and she only says “So?”. We describe the Lady Aeoda to her, but no luck. We thank her for her time and get out. I’ve had it with that woman, her attitude is so annoying! Servana follows us out and asks about the woman we’re looking for. We tell her it is Lady Aeoda we’re looking for. She says Nolwen knows more than she’s saying. She also says that she’s sure Jacut and Maden has some proper notes. After all, they are scientists and they would’ve been keeping meticulous notes about anything they are studying. She says she doesn’t want to hear anything about it, gives a sly smile and walks away.

Time to break into the magiesntist’s room, me thinks!

To be continued…
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Kai S.
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As always, a great read. Thanks for writing this!
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Jonna
Finland
Helsinki
Uusimaa
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"Live your truth. Express your love. Share your enthusiasm. Take action towards your dreams. Walk your talk. Dance and sing to your music. Embrace your blessings. Make today worth remembering." ― Steve Maraboli
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नमस्ते (Namaste) – I honor the place in you in which the entire universe dwells. I honor the place in you which is of love, of truth, of light and of peace. When you are in that place in you and I am in that place in me, we are one.
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Thank you Kai!

There are two good reasons to write these:

1. I will remember what we actually did during the last session, which is a good thing to do before we start playing the next session. Especially since this campaign has been heavy on investigation, the small details really do count.

2. I want to have a record of campaigns I've played in. And this campaign has been such an awesome one, I'm sure I want to go back to these one day and re-live it all
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Kai S.
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Kattvippa wrote:
And this campaign has been such an awesome one, I'm sure I want to go back to these one day and re-live it all
Thanks. modest
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