Hawkes Bay Kingmaker

In which answers start to bloom before us

The giants were powerful, strong and determined, but the combined power of our small group has withstood stronger challenges than these, at far greater odds. They stood nary a chance. If only these beings could have been negotiated with, they might have kept their lives. Still, evil must be met and destroyed as it is found for the good of Iomedae and our fledgling kingdom.

All that was left was the cold, and a massive ice monolith, detailing all the names of those close to me in common, as those it was recording their deaths, like a giant tombstone. The bloom was obviously still in effect as the cold was still clearly evident. With little idea on how to deal with this, I asked if I could carry Oret further into the skies to search for more clues.

While this didn’t reveal any more information, those below focused on destroying the monolith. Fire, dazzling rays and swords all struck the ice, finally toppling it over, and like that, a breath of warmer air flowed through the mountain pass over the shattered remains of the ice monolith.

One of the shards radiated the now familiar aura of the bloom and I touched my sword to it, the essence being drawn into Briar yet again.

With this bloom dealt with, it was becoming obvious that the blooms were getting grander in scale, and this represented an ever growing threat to our kingdom, prompting Learion to insist that we go to where this gate may be.

With no other real leads at this stage, I agreed, but as it was on the other side of our kingdom, we stopped off in Shrike City first to recover.

The researches that Imajica had working on our behalf were able to find out a reasonable amount of information for us, but the most valuable was the suspected requirement of at least three blooms worth of essence to open the gate through to the Thousand Breaths.

As we made to leave, we were met with a disheveled Andromeda Niska, angry at the something destroying her home. At Io’s very strong insistence, we moved quickly to help, only to find a large wall of thorny bushes not far from the city gates.

Flying above them provided us with the view of over two miles of this scrub, thick and fifteen feet high, and apparently growing as Andromeda had not traveled through that much of it to get to us. Inside, those sharp eyed of us spotted three large humanoid shapes moving around, plucking seeds from the thorns and planting, having more grow in their place remarkably quickly.

The three giants, three armed and standing at nearly twenty feet tall each, were spread throughout the forest of thorns. Both Khan and Imajica used fire to good effect, but it only served to anger the plants and they struck out in retaliation.

With little other options, I devised a plan to attack each of the giants at the same time, since they could not be corralled together. Khan, in the form of a sparrow, was to harass and detain one, Learion, Imajica, Oret and Io were to destroy the second and Rafe and I were to destroy the third.

Rafe is clearly very adept with his weapon of choice, and between the two of us, the giant was unable to flee and was cut down, it’s evil no longer endangering the kingdom…or so I thought.

We flew back to help the other dispose of their opponents, but there was only a wolf herding a sheep remaining, so clearly our King had been successful in his task as the other were there, blood staining their weapons, as proof of their vanquished enemy.

The sheep was quickly cut down and a pod grew from the ground where it died. Horrifyingly, inside the pod was small version of what we had just killed, and it was growing at an alarming rate. This was quickly dashed to pieces and the other two were sought and destroyed.

Once this was done, thankfully the forest of thorns dissipated and left a thorn that emitted the bloom essence. Khan kept a hold of this one instead of allowing it to be absorbed by Briar. we will see how this works to open the gate in time.

The people of Shrike City, able to see the threat from the walls, were exceedingly grateful and thanked us profusely as we returned, like conquering heroes from the sagas “My Adventures – The Life of Theros Vitalstatistix, vol.3”.

Our original plan was to go to where the gate supposedly was, so some teleportation magic later, we were in Pitax and making our way to the site of some elven ruins. An amusing run in with some fey dragons sped our way to the place.

A crumbled ruin greeted us, but when we went through the gates, the place changed into something majestic. Those with magic senses were able to tell the rest of us that this was a powerful illusion magic. Iomedae gave me the strength to withstand the magic and I was able to see it for what it really was…a crumbling ruin.

Bad Dreams

After dealing with Imajica’s bad dream ( not that there was much i could do ) went back to bed.
Over the next few night’s some of the others had a similar experience, Khan and his T-Rex wondering round the court yard was interesting but Learian throwing his rattle at the bird seem to do the trick tho.

We went to see the real druid who had some information for us but it came with a but, he had located a copy of the book we were after and it was in the hands of a Lady who was an art lover, we arranged a meeting with her and she would hand over the book ( and here comes the but ) if she could have her name on one of the art building’s we have, she wanted her family name associated with good art and this seamed like a fair request so we could have the book.

After a look through the book we notice that the last page was missing, we also realized that stuff from the other pages had been happening to our Kingdom over the past week or so and we also had a possible location of the entrance to 1000 breaths. In our search for the last page of the book we discover that Learian’s father is alive and is a blind servant in 1000 breaths, but that is only a guess at the moment but that seems to be what the evidence is pointing to. We hear of another Bloom incident and we head off to sort it out and now we are in the middle of sorting out some frost giants.

I Hate Fey

So after killing the Ettins we head of home. Some disturbing dreams causing a few issues with them coming true including me having to subdue a confused T-Rex. It appears that Lerian managed to solve the dreaming bloom issue by killing the big fucking bird in the dreams.

The “Druid” who is yet to actually prove he is a druid managed to find us a copy of the Book were seeking. It came at the cost of some toffee nosed tart having the museum named after her. Turns out the book isn’t complete however as the back page is missing.

We set about trying to find some way of getting the back page. No spells seem to work. We track down the previous owners no luck but it was complete when they sold it. The back page is a map. Toffee nosed tart seems to remember a break in with nothing missing maybe that was when it went missing.
There was someone else looking for it a while ago. Turns out it was Lerians dad.

So I scry for his dad and fuck me he is alive but blind and serving some fucking Fey in what we assume is the plane we need to go to. When I see the fey he serves I am immediately struck blind. Well that sucks. IO quickly fixes that for me.

A lot of discussion about should we try and head on over to that plane but I decree we should find the map page first. Besides we also need to find some way to stop ourselves turning blind as soon as we look at the Fey bitch otherwise it will be game over.

In the meantime we get reports of an area that is now snowing in the middle of summer. Onto the next bloom we head and we are now engaged in scrap with some frost giants.

In which dreams are made to come true

The return trip to Pitax was joyful as Ashularae was re-united with her family.

We were also informed once we had spoken to our new Thousand Breaths advisor that he had sourced a copy of the book he was missing (after being forced by the King to cast a druid only spell to prove his druidic credentials).

This book appeared to be in the hands of a large woman from a wealthy and arts sensitive family. She professed a loud and horrified hatred of the arts abuse under the previous rulership and would gladly return the book to us for the small bargain of having her family name once again associated with something classy in the arts world.

So a suddenly re-named theatre and naming ceremony later and we had the book in our hands. It was obvious that something was wrong even as we were taking possession of it as the woman looked guilty. It was missing the last page and she professed to know nothing of the page, claiming it had been in the family like that.

Leads were scrounged up and the best we could come up with was tracing the book back to its original owner. Since the book had been bought by way of auction, the receipt was sought and found. This allowed us to find the auction house and find the seller. It turned out to be the Pitax museum selling the book and there was a clever staff member who remember the book quite well. Well enough to recall that the last page was a map, but unfortunately, not quite well enough to know what the map looked like since it had been sold years prior.

Another interesting piece of information came up as well. Somebody else had been after the book. An older gentleman had been seen asking around about it as well. One thing led to another and it turned out that this was Learions father.

A simple scrying spell told us something that we hadn’t known prior to this (Learion not having pushed particularly hard in the search for his father up to this point)…his father was ALIVE!

Alive, blind, and serving a green skinned elven looking woman, presumably in the Thousand Breaths. And clearly the Nymph ability to make somebody blind works through spells as well since our King (who was ably scrying up till that point) went blind as soon as he saw the nymph as well.

Jubilost Narthropple was sought out and he appeared to recognise some of the information in the book as a location in our lands. The book also seemed to tell the same tales that we were currently living through, but not in the same order as the book.

We started having strange dreams. First it Imajica and his tower was surrounded by gales, lightning and violent weather, striking in through his towers windows. Unsure of what to do, we watched as Khan appeared to calm the weather with a thought and retreated back to bed. As the nights went on, more of our populace complained of these dreams impacting them as they woke to find them come true.

My own dream led to me being chased by a whirlwind and I was unable to escape from the weather. I awoke to the localised whirlwind in my bedroom, throwing myself and my belongings around the room as I fled for the door.

A large reptilian beast was seen being escorted from the palace by Khan as well, apparently this had something to do with his dream as well.

Learion seemed to be the only one to deal with the dream differently. His description of his dream was short and sweet. “I threw a rattle at the bloody bird and it died.” He was referring, of course, to the large black bird that we had all seen in our dreams.

Our next indication that there was another bloom happening was the request to clear the pass near Varnhold as it was snowed shut in summer. An unusual occurrence indeed and we set out to investigate, only to come across some vaguely familiar frost giants blocking our way once we had trekked further into the pass itself.

With only six giants blocking our way, we were intent on making short work of them, but our King may have made himself too much of a target in an attempt to buy our party an advantage, but we were able to make the advantage tell as we set about cutting these over large problems down to size…

The puzzle pieces are falling into place
Who knew Druids had such distrust.

After the Ettin fight we went home to rest.
Had some weird dream, killed a bird with my rattle felt at ease again.

We went to see if the Druid we hired had come up with anything. Our Druid has such distrust for this other Druid he wants him to cast a spell to make sure he is in fact a Druid.
anyway he had some information… but you gusset it, it came a a cost.
The Druid had located a book. It was in the hands of a Lady ( if you could call her that ) in Pitax, an art lover, this coming from someone in Pitax did not stand her in good stead.
We had the meeting with her and she would hand over the book if she could have her name on one of the “Art” building’s we have but not in Pitax. She wanted her family name associated with good art again. This seamed like an easy request and so it was made so.

A few days later in our capital one of our art building’s was renamed, there was a big renaming ceremony and all was good with the world. She was happy we were happy that was until we got the book and it was missing the last page….sigh

We looked through the book and we saw that is struck a passing resemblance to what had been happening to our kingdom the past few weeks.
Looked a little closer at the beginning of the book and we now know the possible location of where to go to enter 1000 breaths. Through a gate in the location known as 1000 voices thanks to our Ranger for the knowledge on that area.
That was enough for me, We had the sword, we had the location, lets give it a go because blooms are ramping up, yes each time we defeat one we are making the sword better but we might be making this Fey Lady better too, who knows?
But we decide to find the final page first.
In doing so we managed to find my Father… he seams to be blind and serving some green skin elf or elf’s best guess he is in 1000 breaths and blind because of a Nymph as our Druid also went blind as soon as he saw it.
So dads is alive and was after the book too and possibly in 1000 breaths. How he got there is maybe on the last page of the book. Utter utter bastard he is alive and never sort me out…. we will have words.

Bloom alert Bloom alert! Snow in the middle of summer This resembled a page in the book so off we go and try to kill some nasty Frost Giants.

Why do I bother?????

So we decide we are off to Pitax to let the ladies sort out the wedding details for Oret and his Bride.

We are just about to leave when the expert on the Bloom we were seeking turned up. Turns out he is a Druid aswell. Then the wearisome jokes… oh finally a real druid blah blah blah… Ha fucking ha.

So we now have a researcher who as it was pointed out may not know as much as he thinks because he didnt even know about the sword so I don’t know if he is as knowledgeable as we are lead to believe. He was prepared to do some more research for us based around a book that has been destroyed by the previous King of Pitax. He asks for a piece of Treant that has been hit by lightening. We have said yes but I will do my own research as to what possible implications this strange request may have before we actually hand it over.

Anyway off to Pitax. We leave the ladies to sort the wedding and head off to the Village attacked by Wyverns to try and find the thieflings parents. When searching we were attacked by Ettins and a Satyr.

We dispatched the Ettins with the help of my Elemental allies after Imagica had put the Satyr into a maze.

When the Satyr reappeared we hit him with everything we had. I polymorphed him into a turtle only to receive a gobful of abuse from Imagica accusing me of only doing it so that the rest of the team didnt get the magic items he was carrying. I bit back which I think shocked most of the group.

All in all it indicates what some of the party think of me so why do I bother???

Will the real Druid please stand up

As we were about to head off to find the Tiefling’s parents a Druid turns up, apparently we sent for someone to help us with the blooms, he had been studying them in Pitax before all copies of the book a 1000 breaths were ordered to be destroyed. Questioned by Roche it would appeared that he was an expert, but he had a request, he would help us in exchange for a piece of treant that had been struck by lightning. A strange request but we agreed and a deal was struck.

With a quick side trip to drop the Druid off we headed out for the task in hand, as we reached the village it was not a pretty site, we started looking for the Tiefling’s parents remains when we were ambushed by a bunch of Ettins and a Satyr. Imajica made the fight easier by sending the Satyr into a maze and then we made short work of the Ettins, we then prepared for the Satyr return. Because we were ready for him he got a bit of a hammering to start with a few good shots put in by him, then the Khan turned him into a turtle, which upset Imajica and he told us not to kill him until he could turn him back something to do with lute, and if we killed him in that form everything would that’s the way he would stay and the lute would be gone, so we held off. When he was back to his normal self we finished him off

Love is in the air
all the girls get together

Well it’s that time, time for our little rock to get married.
He is super excited about it too. Never seen him so giddy.
All the lady’s including my wife have gone to Pitax to set the scene and get everything ready for the big day. It promises to be a day full of fun and festivities.

While they are getting the place ready the rest of us went to see what we could do about the Tiefling parents but before we went the Real Druid we sent for showed up. After a short interview he was set to work. He did set us a task of finding a book that was written by a man years back who is the only known person to visit 1000 breaths and come back. Should make for some interesting reading.

Off to the the village that was attacked by Wyvern’s.
We arive and the place lookes like….. well it had been attacked by a back of Wyvern’s. Body parts everywhere.
We were having a good look around when we were ambushed!.

A satyr and many ettin, hell bent on ending our existence.

By the look of the gear on the Satyr we were in for a tough fight but Imajica to the rescue and good bye Satyr you are off to a maze for a wile. The Ettin’s we dispatched with some ease as I think they were to look to the Satyr for inspiration and coordination.
We surrounded the area we knew the Satyr was to return to and made ready our attacks.
He came back and got a few good waloping form most of us and was looking rather unwell.
He then got turned into a turtle by the druid to the displeasure of Imajica who then yelled at the druid and told the rest of us to STOP attacking the poor little turtle. Reason was all the gear was now inside the turtle and he really wanted it’s bow. So he did some magic reverse thing and the turtle was now a Satyr again and got smashed once again. Good thing too I now have a magical helmet that allows me to teleport so I am a happy chappy.

In which we discover Imajica has a maze fetish

Traveling back to Shrike City, we started to look further into our issues with blooms.

Our luck held and our request for a specialist in Blooms had garnered a recipient. An elderly Druid who had spent many years researching blooms in Pitax before King Castruccio Irovetti outlawed certain books and stopped the research dead in its tracks since the books were destroyed.

We questioned the man and it appeared true that he was the foremost expert. His request was simple. He’d gladly help us in exchange for a piece of treant that had been struck by lightning. A strange request to be sure, but we’ve dealt with other strange requests over the years.

A quick trip back to the Eberheart family farm was on the cards. I wanted to ensure that we got a fair cost of the destruction caused by the last bloom and replace those destroyed crops from kingdom funds to ensure our subjects could continue to provide for both themselves and those who purchased from them. I’ve got the figures and it will be dealt with in the next treasury meeting.

Our next step was to return to Pitax to allow our new researcher to continue his work. This made for a short trip up to Ashularae home village. I was determined to make things right and earn her loyalty so that we would have a talented agent working for us for more than simple money, as she has done previously.

The village was still standing when we arrived, but damaged in parts (although nothing to stop in being a functioning village), and sans the actual living villagers. I’ve seen plenty of destruction and death, but the sight of a whole village destroyed by rampaging wyverns was still shocking, and I caught Io holding back emotions as well.

We began to search, and somebody had the clever idea to search for tiefling remains as this would shorten the search considerably as there were not many of them.

While searching, we were ambushed by two headed ogres and a satyr. Thankfully Imajica’s warning allowed us to react quickly and Oret’s leadership gave us a vital jump on the newly found enemy.

We have seen Imajica grow in power from a small rainbow flinging elf to a mighty eleven wizard, an archmage in his own right now. But he seems to have developed a liking for sending enemies to another realm, or maze, as he calls it. The spell seems simple enough to cast as the verbal components appear to be simply asking the unlucky recipient if they are a Minotaur.

The satyr, unfortunately for him, was not, and he duly disappeared. That left us with a large number of two headed ogres (I’m told they are called ettins). Several spells, some huge fire elementals and some impressive sword play from both Learion and our newest companion, Rafe, dispatched the remaining. Even when half a dozen more appeared from behind us, they realised the error of their ways and fled, only to be cut down by the fine blade of Rafe as they ran.

All that was left was the satyr. He appeared shortly after the fire elementals winked out of existence again. And promptly was slashed, magicked and turned into a tortoise, before almost immediately being blinded, turned back into a satyr and died, without even getting off an attack.

We have started to become truely fearsome in how well our party deals with threats.

We also managed to find ourselves the family we were looking for and after asking their permission to bring them back from the dead, Io raised them all. Now we just need to escort them to their daughter in Pitax to ensure we have kept our part of the bargain.

Blooming Hell

So we dealt with that first bloom and then went home to sort out some kingdom issues that needed sorting. New roads and highways were built. The kingdom is getting more user friendly now which is good.

While discussing what to do next we were interupted by one of Oret’s farm hands. Apparently his farm was under attack by some sticks.

Bloom number 2 has struck. We quickly teleported to his farm to see what was what. On arriving yes the farm was certainly under attack and we were quickly surrounded. A couple of quick wall of fire spells, some fire protection and some exploding and we dealt with the sticky stick things. I was amused by some Kobolds calling themselves the Kob Squad who had set out looking for adventure, fame and fortune. They had been trying to help aswell. I of course thanked them and have promised them some silver swords for their troubles. (some silver carving knives will do the trick).

We decided that we needed to track down the source of this bloom and eventually found it. Again withe use of magic spells we were quickly able to remove the offending sticky stick sticks from this plane and end this particular bloom.

We are now pretty sure there will be more to come until we deal with what is actually causing them. Until we can find out more we will just have to wait and deal with them as they crop up.

Time to go find some silver carving knives and present them to the Kob Squad.


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