Kingmaker

The Right to Rule

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After the The Steel Vanguard vanquished the Staglord and his Bandits, a scribe from Baron Aldorn “Foesmasher” Thuragar came to Olegs to thank the Vanguard and issue a new charter to the group: 2nd Charter
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With this the Steel vanguard appoitned positions of Rule for the new Kingdom to come.

Arahntu is to be the High General and lead the kingdom’s armies and is a public hero.
Durzo is to be the Warden; and lead the kingdom;s defense and city guard.
Eggplant is to be the Royal Assassin; which can serve as a public executioner, a headsman, or a shadowy assassin.
Jhod Kavken is to be the High Priest and guide the kingdom’s religious needs and growth.
Illyn is to be the Grand Diplomat and oversee the international relations.
Oleg Leveton is to be the Treasurer;
Svetlana Leveton is to be the Counciler; Ensuring that the will of the citizenry is represented.
Rikimaru is to be the Spymaster; observes the kingdom’s underworld and criminal elements and spies on other kingdoms.
Willow is to be the Marshall and organize patrols and enforeces justice in the rural and wilderness regions.
Lord Valis Loredamon is to be the Magister; to guide the kingdom’s higher learning and magic.
and finally Prince Brylynn Obarskyr was named Ruler; the primary leader of the kingdom.

The group began renovations on the Stag Lord’s fort in order to make it the capital for their new nation. With roles established and construction underway, the group decided to explore the remaining unknown areas in their newly acquired kingdom.

They soon happened upon an unusual sight. At first glance it appeared to be nothing more than a pile of gathered rocks admist an open plain, but upon further investigation it was discovered to be a grave of a large creature. A few less superstitious members had decided to unearth the creature to figure out what exactly it was. No sooner had they removed but a few rocks when Arahntu caught a strong odor that resembled cat urine. It was now apparent that Wymics, half-human and half lion nomads, may have wondered within the new kingdom. It was a thought they wished not to humor, but one that would need to be addressed soon.

The group continued south into unexplored territory in hopes of finding these hybrid nomads and any other possibly hostile guests. The group soon came across a huge statue that had been erected in an open plain within the woods. It was a statue of the god Mask. A patron deity to Rogues and thieves. Obviously, the presence of this ominous statue and what it represents was less than desirable to the group. Rikimaru noticed the eyes of the statue gleam in the sunlight and decided to climb up to get a closer look. It was jewels embedded within the eye sockets. The curious ninja decided to take a dagger and pry out one of the jewels. The moment his dagger’s edge touched the eye socket, a dark shadow shot out across his arm and appeared to suck out his life force. Thankfully he survived the event; however, now the group was even more adamant about taking down the cursed statue. They decided to wait until morning so that the horses had rest and Rikimaru could recover. They receded to the cover of the trees near the statue and set up camp.

In the night, the group was attacked by a large shadow with bright red eyes. They instantly jumped into action and attacked the demon.Arahntu stumbled upon charging the creature and instantly stunned herself. Weapons had little affect on the creature, but that didn’t stop the group from continuing to fight. In the middle of the fray Rikimaru paused and told the group that if everyone leaves and doesn’t come back to the statue, the evil creature will go leave them be. They group asked how the ninja knew this to be true. He then stated that it was communicated to him by the beast. Most disregarded the lunatic rantings of the disheveled ninja. Willow ,who had already taken damage and couldn’t lay a scratch on the demon, conceded and stepped out from the fight. The dryad walked over to join Eggplant who had left the fight earlier to drag the stunned Arahntu to safety. The rest of the Steel vanguard eventually defeated the evil creature. The victory was bittersweet, since now the group worried as to why the creature was able to communicate through their ally.

The next morning the group decided to come back with more manpower to pull down the statue. When packing up camp, it was apparent to everyone that Rikimaru’s skin had become discolored and grey. Fearing that a curse may be taking hold of their far east brethren, they decided to take him to the Temple of Chauntea to be healed. Unfortunately, the divine pond was unable to cure his discoloration. They group was still worried, but Rikimaru claimed to be fine. Although still concerned, the group pressed on to discover more in the territory.

The soon came upon a sight that turned Willow‘s stomach. It was a once beautiful grove that had turned to swamp land. In the middle of this swamp lied a pristine unicorn carcass with it’s horn removed. [[:willow:]] shuttered to think what kind of monster committed this heinous act. The group pushed forward to learn more. It was then that they happened upon another grove. It belonged to a friendly dryad named Tessira, she explains that she has lived their in peace with her friend Falcor, a satyr. Although their peace had been recently broken by the arrival of a malicious scythe-tree who wished for nothing more than to feast on the flesh of they fey, dryads in particular. Willow inquired if the newly befriended fey knew anything about the unicorn not far from their grove. They did not have any knowledge of what occurred, but we’re certain that the corpse sounded too intact to be the work of the scythe-tree. Tessira was kind enough to point out the location of the scythe-tree on the map and the group set out the net morning to slay it. Willow, riddled with rage, lead the pack into the scythe-tree’s location. She wished for nothing more than to destroy this evil being, but she also wanted pry any information about the unicorn from the fiend.

Upon entering the wooded sanctum of the scythe-tree, it became aware of their presence. The scythe-tree was especially happy to see the dryad, it wasn’t very often his favorite snack came to him. Willow readied her axe and began to shout questions to the creature. Questions that fell upon deaf ears, for the scythe-tree began to move in for the kill. Willow attempted to stand her ground, but she took a thrashing from his large branches. In fear of getting eaten she stepped into an adjacent tree and teleported to another less than 30 ft behind the beast. The group fought strongly against the malevolent tree. Rikimaru repeatedly and viciously struck the enemy, all the while shadowy tentacles emenated from his flailing arms. However, the group brushed off the unusual shadows since the issue now was the scythe-tree. Willow attempted to shoot the tree with an arrow but could not penetrate the thick bark. Yte again she could not hurt the enemy. Her and Eggplant, who was also at a disadvantage in the fight, sat and watched as the group heroically dispatched the tree.

The Steel Vanguard stood victorious once again. Tessira and Falcor would now be safe. Yet, the group could not rejoice, for thoughts weighed heavy on each individual. Thoughts of their usefulness to the group, the possible curse afflicting their ally, and the kingdom they will have to shoulder to glory. They decided they we’re done exploring for the time being and would head back to the up-and-coming capital of their new nation.

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Temples and Forts, OH MY!

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The group headed back to Oleg’s Outpost to gather more supplies and return the wedding ring to his wife Svetlana. The trader and his wife were ectastatic at the return of the ring and offered the group a line of credit for the trading post. The group gathered materials in anticipation of heading to the abandoned temple. They remembered Jhod Kavken’s earlier request to accompany them and informed the priest it was time to visit the forgotten temple.

The group wasted no time in heading straight for the location indicated on the map by the grig and faerie dragon they had met earlier. Upon arrival to the lost temple it became apparent there was an eerie presence to the once sacred reprieve. The columns and marble were covered in moss, the pristine fountain in front of the temple now filled with algae and bacteria. It was obvious this place had fallen out of divine favor and into the clutches of cursed fiends.

The Steel Vanguard readied themselves in anticipation of an upcoming fight. The clanging of unsheathed weapons and the casting of support magic was enough to draw the attention of a creature within the temple. A large bear stepped out of the temple and caught sight of the anxious adventurers. The bear charged towards the group and put up a strong fight. Unfortunately for the bear, he was unable to overcome the shear power of the Steel Vanguard’s numbers. It fell quickly, revealing its true form to be that of a cursed human. As the poor soul drew his last breath, the curse began to lift from the temple and the overgrowth began to recede from the temple yard. The balance was restored and it appeared the Deity of the temple, Chauntea, was pleased with the outcome. For when Willow decided to drink from the newly pristine fountain in the court yard, her eye was magically restored.

The group left Jhod Kavken to further assist in the restoration of the temple and set off to find the location of the Stag Lord. They hadn’t made it far before Rikimaru realized they were being followed by what appeared to be a small dragon. The group attempted to communicate with the unusual creature and ask for his aid; however, it appeared he was following them more out of curiousity rather than hopes of joining. Since, the small dragon was not forward with his birth name, Arahntu decided to coin him a name that would strike fear in even the boldest of Bug Bear. And that name was… Eggplant!

After some time the group came upon what appeared to be a hidden bandit fortress. The group found difficulty in deciding the approach they would take on the unwitting bandits. It was then that Eggplant decided to take the initiative and infiltrate the fortress for reconnaissance purposes. The plan worked well enough until he was spotted and decided to be a hero. Eggplant began dive bombing the watchtower guards in hopes of overcoming them with his narcoleptic poison. The fight caused enough of a stir that it was seen by the group who was waiting off in the distance. The group knew they had no choice but to spring into action for the sake of their new friend.

The Steel Vanguard slashed through not only bandits, but undead and beasts to get their trapped compadre. Before making it to the watch towers the group found themselves face-to-face with the Staglord. They could not allow this opportunity to pass and began to battle the heinous leader. All the while Eggplant continued to battle the guards within the watch towers. Eggplant, weary from the continuous fight, fumbled on one of his fly by attacks and inadvertently stabbed out his own eye with his stinger.(Familiar lol)

The battle within the fort lasted quite some time, but the group eventually slayed the evil Staglord. With the fall of the bandit leader, the bandit activity within the Shaar will most definitely decline. The group gathered the numerous treasures within the fort and set out to relay the good news to all who wish to hear it.

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Ko-bolds and Mites

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The Steel Vanguard arrived at the Old Sycamore, a hundred foot tall tree and found that the mites had inhabited it. They entered into a secret entrance and fought the clan.

The mites came at the group, one wave after another; however, they proved no match for the strength of The Steel Vanguard. As a last ditch effort, the mite leader unleashed a gigantic centipede. Durzo stood toe-to-tendril against the giant beast and mustered all of his might and magic into one deafening blow. The centipede’s head burst and his remains fell to the ground.

The mite leader, still un-phased by the obvious difference in strength, charged in upon a riding tick with the remainder of his clan. Willow quickly attempted to fire an arrow at the charging mite leader, but fumbled her bow and inadvertently injured her own eye in the process (…Dammit). The riding tick then grappled Lord Valis Loredamon and began sucking out his blood at a rapid pace. Getting the tick to release the helpless Lord proved difficult. It was becoming apparent that the blood loss was taking effect on Lord Valis Loredamon. Thankfully without a moment to spare, his valiant Prince Brylynn Obarskyr came to his rescue and dispatched the tick and his rider. His subject was safe and grateful for his Prince’s kindness (…Possible Love Connection :-P).

They found the kobolds statue and a scrap of paper that showed what the kobolds had gained in treasure, one being Svetlana’s wedding ring. They returned to the kobolds lair and made an agreement with the Chieftain to exchange the statue (therby freeing them of Tartuk’s curse) if they would agree to leave their lair and move east out of the Greenbelt. The chieftain reluctantly agreed on the condition that the group not only give the Kobolds the statue, but also slay the evil kobold shaman that had placed the cursed statue over their clan. The group agreed. Without hesitation they entered the evil shaman’s room and committed murder in the first degree. On a side note, it turns out the kobold shaman was really a poly-morphed suicidal gnome. The gnome wished to spend the last of his days torturing tribes of unintelligent kobolds with hoax curses and superstition (…what a Dick!).

With the kobold’s leaving and Svetlana’s ring found, the group plotted their next course of action. All the exploration that laid ahead and the tasks they had agreed upon will undoubtedly test these heroes even further. They left the abandoned kobold cave and resumed their quest. Not realizing the great evil waiting for them in the near future (Story Arc! Dun DUn DUN!!!!).

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Arrival of Royalty

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The The Steel Vanguard has come to know battle. As they killed off a large trapdoor spider they set out to explore the remaining eastern ridge of the greenbelt of Shaar. They came across and fought an Owlbear in the wilds as well as finding a tree that had been the hidding spot for one bandits treasure.

A day later as they traveled south they found a Kobold Mine. This mine had a sign hanging from it that read, “Oaktop Silver Mine”. Out in front they found a cage that held a small hideous creature called a Mite. There, the ninja spotted a kobold guard asleep on duty, but as he approached, it hand only been resting its eyes from the daylight and when it gazed upon him it yelled out in suprise! But it knew that its clan needed help from biggens and so he asked if the humans would help his clan track down their lost idol. It had been stolen from them by the Mites!

The kobold Nakpik asked if they’d meet with his cheif and he ran off to get him. Chief Sootscale came to see and talk to the group and behind him Tartuk the shaman of the clan came as well.

The group was told that the Mites laired north and so they set off in search of the Kobolds lost idol and found that a massive sandstorm apporached from the east. They made a mad dash across many miles and in doing so two members of the party became lost and left behind. Hevis, with Earwig riding with him and Kazuul all were caught in the massive strom of sand and acid.

Barely making it to Olegs Trading Post alive they shut themselves in until the storm had passed. Unfortunatly, they did not all survive. Poor Earwig had suffocated in the terrible brutal storm.

The Steel Vanguard had also met new charter members. His highness, one of the sons of Alusair Nacacia Obarskyr, Prince Brylynn Obarskyr and his court mage Lord Valis Loredamon had been holding up at Olegs as well. They introduced themselves and became familar with the groups investigations and explorations of the region. The Prince also brought with him his scribe and personal bodyguard Barrabbus an initiate to the Purple Dragon Knights. Another proclamation of the Baron’s was sent as well as a posting at Oleg’s board outside his Trading post was picked up.

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It was then that Hevis and Kazuul told the Steel vanguard that with regret and that they felt a loss in commradery and felt the need to move on and possibly set out to track down the Iron Wraith, one of the other chartered groups set out from Sespech.

All the while the dangers of the wilds still looms about the group as well as the Staglords bandits roaming the lands.

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Exploring the Wilds

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Exploring the Wilds

After recovering from the maul attack of the bear, Rikimaru found that his boot straps had been tied together. Some type of practical joke was being played on him. Willow found tracks, that of a grig and Kazuul sought out the fey creature to befriend it.

With no luck, the group chose to venture on to the Bandit’s Camp. They soon found its location with the highwaymen lying in wait. A battle ensued and the party overcame the bandits. They soon met up with the two-axed lady, Kressle,that Oleg had warned them about and fought her into submission.

With all the bandits being subdued, the last living bandit gave up and repented his ways under the guidance of Hevis. He told of his nickname Earwig and stated that he would help the party as best he could. He told of the true leader of the bandits in this area that goes by the name of the Staglord!

He could not give a detailed location to the Staglords whereabouts, but did manage to give some details on his operation.

Returning to the area where the bear was dispatched, they picked up the trail of the grig and follow the trail to its nest. There they met the grig Tyg-Titter-Tut and her friend Perlivash the fairy dragon. With the help of “gifts” of shiny objects and promise of some wine, the party gained some information about the general area and further information about some of the landmarks and highlights in the green belt.

The party then returned to Oleg’s trading post for rest and to resupply. There they encountered three guards sent to help with security of Olegs. Kesten Garess explained that the Baron had sent him and his two warriors to help guard the trading post. Kesten also brought with him a proclamation from the Baron, Quests1a

The next morning, the Steel Vanguards met a traveler, Jhod Kavken who is a priest out on a vision quest of sorts. He told of a possible lost temple somewhere in the green belt of Shaar, but guarded by a crazed bear.

Svetlana Leveton also spoke to the party of some special radishes that could be used in a soup, one that would help to calm Olegs nerves, since he was much stressed of late.

The adventuring group then journeyed and explored the area up to the radish patch, finding Kobolds had already collected many of the radishes (filling their bellies as well) and the kobolds took up arms against the invading party.

From there they chose to follow the kobolds tracks towards their lair. But before they completed the trail, they came across webbing that spanned a 400 feet patch of ground. It was the home of a giant trapdoor spider.

After slaying the monster the party searched its lair.

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The Adventure Begins

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And so Baron Aldorn “Foesmasher” Thuragar sends out a decree to charter Heroes from across Faerun to explore his newly aquired lands of Shaar. To explore and map the untamed lands for the glory of Sespech.

The heroes met in the city of Ormpetarr, in Sespech. There they met one another and introduced themselves. They gathered at the Barons castle and met with his top advisor. In attendance were: Arahntu, Durzo, Willow, Hevis, Rikimaru and Kazuul. They were ushered into the Baron’s council room and met with him. He issued them an official Charter to carry forth and travel to the southern lands.

The group thought it wise to give a title to their newley chartered adventuring group and chose the name of The Steel Vanguard. Partially inspired by the Baron’s own old group the Band of Iron.

The party traveled for 6 days on the Golden Road and passed throught he city of Innarlith without problems. They crossed the Firesteap Mountain pass into the upper region of the Shaar to Olegs Trading Post.

Once there they met with Oleg Leveton and wife pregnant wife Svetlana Leveton. They heard of the troubles that had befallen Oleg and his trading post. Bandits have been making raids on poor Olegs stock of trade goods and return each month for “taxes”. Oleg stated that bandits were led the first time by a woman that carried two hand axes and her second in command was a crude hooded man named Happs Bydon and six or so bandits.

This information was given to them by Oleg as Svetlana served the party a hearty stew and warm bread. After much debating the party decided to ambush the bandits upon the bandits next visit. Which happened to be the very next day.

So at one hour after sunrise the bandits approached and entered into the trading post of Oleg. The group attacked when the first bandit dismounted. The battle unfolded quickly with Rikimarn leaping from fort wall to building roof, but tripping up and falling onto the ground behind the bandits. The bandits leader, Happs Bydon began launching arrows at the party. The Steel Vanguard finally over came the bandits and all but one bandit was slain. The last having been magically put to sleep and bound in rope. He was magically compulsed to give information and draw a map to the bandits local hideout.

He was then dispatched as per charter and dealing with bandits. The group then traveled out from the fort into the wild of the Shaar in search of the hideout. This is when they encountered an angered grizzley bear and were mauled.

They eventually took the bear down and skinned it for its fur and took its claws as trophies.

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