Smugglers of Kristophan

Prologue

Sjuly 494
The party begins it’s adventures serving as the night crew of the sailing ship Rocinante avoiding rocky shores and fighting off things that go bump in the night, cutting their teeth on a couple of specters that boarded the ship. Tatsu Lung started what will hopefully be a long tradition of comical spills when he fell out of the crows nest (breaking two holes in the ship) in his haste to join the battle. In the end the specters were defeated and/or retreated (was difficult to be sure) and there was much rejoicing.

A few days later the Rocinante docked at Rogarsheim with its precious cargo of hot pants. A slight complication arose however when the merchant purchasing the hot pants (Othello) confessed that the mercenaries he had hired to guard his warehouse had gone missing. The party was quickly contracted to defend the warehouse and the precious hot pants during the dangerous evening hours until a major buyer arrived (expected any day). Othello’s investment was not wasted as the warehouse was raided by goblins that very night. The party deployed effectively to bottleneck the goblins at the two warehouse entrances, blunting the attack and sending what goblins were not killed fleeing for their lives.

When the buyer of the hot pants arrived, the party found themselves with nothing to do. The captain of the Rocinante informed them that a deal had fallen through, so he was now left searching for a new cargo to haul. The party sought out the head of the local merchant’s guild, Scipio, to see if there were any available contracts that might fit their talents. Scipio hammered out a deal for the party to make some cash killing goblins and promptly they set off into the woods in search of a goblin camp. What they found was an ambush set up by elves (fortunately the friendly kind). The elves, not being fans of the goblins, informed the party of a goblin camp nearby that they would be happy to see razed. Upon further discussion it was arranged for the elves to draw a portion of the goblins into an ambush, leaving a more manageable force at the camp for the party to deal with. The plan worked well and despite a very difficult fight not a single party member was lost. Besides the bounty from the chieftain headpiece and many goblin ears the party also recovered a number of magical items and a stash of gold, gems and a treasure map of sorts in the chieftain’s tent (after defeating the Iron Cobra which guarded them).

Returning to Rogarsheim triumphantly, the party found that the Rocinante was ready to sail with a new cargo. Sadly, a few nights into the voyage (while passing through the Straight of the Leviathan appropriately enough) a loud noise disrupted the peaceful night. It was discovered to be an Aboleth slowly breaching the hull of the ship. Lacking the means to fight such a powerful creature the captain was forced to abandon ship (via a Linked Portal scroll he’d been saving for such an emergency). As the casters performed the ritual the rest of the party and crew fought off the Aboleth’s minions. Finally the ritual was completed and the portal to Milgath was opened. The captain ran to his quarters to grab a few things but ordered everyone else through the portal. The party and over half of the crew made it through successfully. Unfortunately, due to Gaylord Anaxarchus’s lackluster performance of the ritual, the portal only remained open for a few seconds. The fate of the captain and the rest of the crew are uncertain, but in all likelihood they are now enslaved by the horrible Abolith. Perhaps one day they shall be avenged!

Stepping through the portal, the party entered the ruins of Milgath. One of the surviving crew (now our minions) rescued from the ship triggered a simple trap, causing a bell to ring. Tatsu Lung and his minions took shelter in a nearby building, only to be attacked from the shadows by a Choker. The Choker quickly broke the neck of a minion, then assaulted Tatsu Lung who it managed to latch on to as the group tried to exit the building. Meanwhile a quite large Deathjump Spider fell from the sky and bit a minion to death and was quickly engaged by multiple party members and their minions. Sensing it’s impending doom, the Spider made a mighty leap back atop the building from whence it came. As the group tried to kill the Choker that was using Tatsu Lung as a meat shield (successfully on one occasion) sounds of danger approaching could be heard. As the Choker was finally slain, a large group of very guarded, but not openly hostile Kobolds encircled the group. The commander of the Kobolds demanded that five members of the party go with them to be sacrificed to their god. The party politely declined and a pitched battle ensued. Most of the first wave of Kobolds was cleared out quite quickly, but the second wave proved a bit more determined. Most of the surviving crew of the Rocinante were killed and A swarm of Needlefang drakes reaped havoc on Bobilius Phett. None in the party made it through unscathed, but in the end they fought off the the Kobold threat.

Quickly seeking to leave the ruins of Milgath to avoid any other hidden threats, the party set off for the nearby town of Rudil, hoping that it managed to fare better after the collapse. Their hope did not go unrewarded. Rudil, while a shadow of it’s former self, supported a small and mostly self-reliant population. With a chance to breathe, the party took some time to discuss where to go from here. Lacking options, it was decided to seek out Bobilius Phett’s uncle (Ator) who owned a ship and seek employment with him. No ships in port at Rudil were capable of making the voyage to Bobilius Phett’s home town, so instead the party sought passage to Morgad or Kristophan. A lizardfolk fisherman named Santiago negotiated a deal to take them as far as Morgad and an uneventful voyage ensued. Upon arrival at Morgad an unexpected surprise awaited them in the docks—Ator’s ship.

Upon investigating the ship it was discovered to now be owned by crimelord Diogenes and captained by a dwarf named Deneb. The exact fate of Ator was unclear, but it seems that he owed money to Diogenes and when unable to pay his debt, the ship was taken as payment.

Desiring to possess the ship, but not prepared to make such a powerful enemy as Diogenes, the group decided to try and ggain possession of the ship “legitimately”. Phase 1 involved sneaking a rogue onto the ship to leave a couple of unique marks carved into the ship as proof of our mad infiltration skillz and the general incompetence of Deneb’s crew. This was accomplished by most of the party creating a distraction (a staged fight between Tatsu Lung and Gigantus Brutalis) while Otto made a relatively stealthy boarding maneuver (involving swimming, climbing and what not). Otto carved in some graffiti and also stole a spyglass from the crow’s nest while he was aboard. He then managed to escape with little trouble. Once he was in the clear, the rest of the group broke up the fight just before the local guards were arriving to lay down the law.

With phase 1 a clear success, the party travelled on foot to Kristophan on foot, only being ambushed by goblins once on the way. The group immediately did not like Kristophan when they were charged 1 silver per head to enter the city gates. Arranging a meeting with Diogenes proved relatively simple, with only a day of waiting required (which the party used to sample some of the local flavor). The meeting with Diogenes went fairly smoothly. The party managed to convince him of their sincere interest while not letting on that they had any affiliation with the ship’s former owner (Ator). Despite Diogenes’ apparent dissatisfaction with Deneb, he wasn’t willing to hand over the ship to a bunch of strangers. To prove they were at least somewhat trustworthy and committed, Diogenes gave the party an errand to run… [end of prologue]

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