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    110 KB Anonymous 10/04/11(Tue)22:01 No.16523963  
    I'm going to share a campaign journal with you peeps. It is definitely not mine:

    So, my group is playing a month long campaign intended to climax around Halloween. Naturally, this campaign is heavy on the horror side of things. I won't ramble on about the main story-arch or the sub-archs we're currently smack dab in the middle of (at risk of turning this into a 5 page thread).

    But we're currently a 6 person group of level 6 characters, and we're currently in deep dragon doodoo.

    We're on a large island/small continent which, aside from a noteable degree of isolation, is more or less like the nearby mainland. A little lighter on supplies and certainly no major cities or kingdoms, but not a bumpkin-ville. it's also been under a massive undead plague for a few weeks, of which we've been a part of.

    The undead are all mindless. Anyone who dies rises as some kind of undead creature, usually a zombie. The long dead are returning as skeletons and low-level homebrew ghost creatures (partially incorporeal, creepy suckers anyway). And it's not just humanoids, animals and even insects are simply not staying dead here.

    We were hell bent on figuring out why. We're starting to wonder if it'll be a better plan to just turn tail and try to convince some paladin organizations to rake over the place with holy wrath.

    Except there's a few stubborn villages who simply refuse to give up their ancestral lands/homes. We're currently in one of those villages, which has managed to set up a few concentric rings of walls and trenches that keeps them relatively safe for a decent length of time.
    >> Anonymous 10/04/11(Tue)22:02 No.16523974
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    Enter problem two. There's a nest of Kythons that lived deep deep in a cave system, who mostly kept to slaughtering things under ground. The plague has affected them too, and while the kythons have been more successful at keeping their undead numbers down (mostly through brutal claw to claw shredding), the whole thing has them riled up enough that they've broken from their natural instinctual cycles, and have come to the surface. They're moving across the island in a wave of carnage.

    For anyone who doesn't know what a kython is: They're from the book of vile darkness, and the fastest way to sum them up is that they're D&D "Aliens" (as in, chestburster, facehugger, queen alien aliens). They aren't LITERALLY aliens, they're more of a demon/aberration, but that's more or less how to sum it up fast.
    >> Anonymous 10/04/11(Tue)22:03 No.16523985
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    We're in a village of a about 7 dozen people. We're surrounded by undead humanoids, monstrous humanoids, and animals. They're mooks, we could wipe them out with some patience and a good battle strategy, but there's a bigger problem on the horizon. Our scrying and divinations have let us know that we've got about one week, give or take a day, to get ready for a wave of kythons to attack the town in an orgy of blood and fury.

    There's a LOT of them. A LOT of juveniles, a good number of broodlings and adults, and a single slaymaster (you have to know about the kythons for that to make sense). Worse, anything we kill will get up and fight us again, though probably weaker. WORSE WORSE, anything THEY kill will get up and fight us.

    I think our DM wanted us to quest for something to help us protect the town, but we threw a curveball at him, and suggested:

    Us: "What if we taught the village how to fight?"
    DM: "In a week?"
    Us: "Better than nothing."

    In our games, 6th level means you're a downright famous member of your chosen class. Maybe not a world-shatterer, but a 6th level cleric is almost definitely someone other clerics have heard of. A 6th level wizard is a respectable and admired arcanist. Ect.

    Since we're considered "downright incredible" by 99% of the worlds population (99% of the worlds population being 1rst level NPC classes), and since our DM liked our suggestion so much, he's letting us go for it. We get to transform the NPCs into ready adventurers. The solid week of hands-on training will give them a (one-time only) jump to second level, and they loose their NPC classes, gaining real base classes instead.
    >> Anonymous 10/04/11(Tue)22:03 No.16523994
    Our group is: Wizard, Archivist, Cleric, Rogue, Paladin, and a Dragon Shaman (very relevant of course).

    Our DM has agreed that, between the 6 of us, we know just enough to START anyone down any path they (we) choose. If someone wanted to become a spellthief, our wizard and rogue would know enough to turn them into one. If someone wanted to be a binder, our archivist would be able to tell them how to start looking into it. ect. So our options are "anything", and we've got a crapload of books.

    Not everyone can fight of course. Relevant numbers:

    29 males which we can count actually truly count on in a war (which is what this really is) with slightly above average stats from a life of farming and rough-housing (physically 10-13s with a few peaking at 14, the DM will give us exact numbers at our next session). Mentally a little less stellar, but we can still expect a few to peak up at 13 or 14.

    11 women who are hard-headed enough to join us on the battlefield and not freak out (our DM isn't sexist, this is just a slice of ye-olde-village life where not all of the women are ready to stab a zombie in the face until they're cornered. Please please please don't turn this into a sexism-in-gaming thread, that's not going on, promise). One of the 11 women is a schoolmarm with 16 INT and some pre-cursory training with a rapier (gets proficiency and weapon focus with it as free feats, regardless of what classes we give her). She also has a +1 rapier that's been in her family for a long time, which is relevant because we're looking at mostly simple weapons and farming implements here. She won't let anyone else use the rapier though, unless it's an immediate situation where a weapon is needed.

    7 teens (5 male, 2 female) who aren't as physically able as the adults yet, but are still ready to fight. They're also collectively furious at the situation and ready to go down swinging, all of them.
    >> Anonymous 10/04/11(Tue)22:05 No.16524002
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    There's more people in the village, but they're either unwilling, or unable, to really fight with us. The elderly, the timid, ect. We've also established that at least another dozen of the women and a few more men will be willing to shoot arrows from the rooftops of barricaded buildings, but won't be willing to go into battle head on, and they'll retreat inside at the first sign of the rooftops being overrun by kythons (inevitable if they're too effective).

    The kythons will have trouble getting through some of the current defenses, and we have a week to make fortifications, simple traps, and anything else we can think of. If they can't overrun us all at once, they'll wind up attacking in waves, which will give us a chance to re-group and prepare for the next wave. And deal with any zombies in the town

    We've got a full map, but it's all pretty basic. Mostly one level buildings made of wood, a few second story buildings, we're going to use the schoolhouse as a base of operations (sturdy as heck, two levels, decent size) and the non-combatants will be inside when the carnage starts. We'll also try to persuade the DM to let us turn a few of the elderly into some kind of healers. That'll give us a chance to get our wounded patched up in between waves without wasting our resources.

    Our DM isn't afraid of telling us, "You could have saved these people, but failed". We don't know if this is even possible, or if we're in a hopeless situation. Our DM isn't the Devil, but he's not going to baby us, especially during a horror campaign.
    >> Anonymous 10/04/11(Tue)22:05 No.16524014
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    We each have a good collection of 'junk' gear like (scrolls, piddly wands, trap making material, potions ect), a few decent weapons, some armor, ect. Our wizard can craft wands, and both him and the archivist can make scrolls. Past that, we're basically SOL.

    Our DM will give us some leeway on what we can find laying around the village (if we go looking for a scythe, we'll probably find a farming implement that'll work for it, ect). We can also expect to be able to improvise some weaker armor and shields out of stuff that's in the town, and there are some real weapons and armor stuff around.

    While it's not literally gear, there's also the fact that our wizard knows Arcane Lock as a spell, and can spend the week giving a few strategic locations a +10 DC to be busted down by kythons. The basement to the school (one door only, no way out) will certainly have an arcane lock, plus mundane fortifications, for if the survivors have to fall back inside of it.

    But ultimately? I have no freaking clue what to do, and neither does our group. We all have some notes taken down about kythons (or DM is the only one with a book of vile darkness), stuff our Archivist 'told' us with some knowledge checks. I just keep thinking of our DMs reply when our wizard asked how many were coming. "Lots."

    We've thought, if worse came to worse, we could try to barricade the survivors in the basement of the school, with some heavy heavy duty physical supplies, and try to run our hides out of there to bring in help... but where we could find help on this island, whether or not the barricades would hold for the undetermined amount of time it could take us, and the downright GRUUSOME possibility that we might not realistically make it back in at all... Not a pretty option.
    >> OP 10/04/11(Tue)22:07 No.16524027
    anyone reading these?
    >> Anonymous 10/04/11(Tue)22:10 No.16524074
    I certainly am. Is that all? Epic stuff like this is why I play these games in the first place...

    Are you asking us for suggestions to hold out against a massive onslaught of terrifying beasts? Because I think we can handle that.
    >> OP 10/04/11(Tue)22:13 No.16524092
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    As long as one person is reading:

    The roofs and rear are going to have a few glyphs of warding. Our wizard doesn't know explosive runes at the moment, so that's out. He will set some alarms in the back, so we know if they're trying to get in that way.
    The street and areas in front of us, same thing. Glyphs of warding, set to sound-burst or inflict-wounds. That'll at least thin them out, and possibly stun some of them. The less we go toe to toe with at once, the better.

    We've also got a few traps and tricks for the frontal assault, which we're hoping to snag adult kythons with. The slaymaster will probably be too smart to fall for much, but we're going to put spiked pillars up ready to fall forwards, sideways, and wherever else we can position them. There's a chance our DM will even use his infamous line "Forget the math, that just killed whatever it hit".
    Spiked trenches will be set up, mainly to slow them down. The last spiked trench will be facing backwards. We're prepared to bullrush them into it if we get the chance.

    So who's "we"?
    >> The Army OP 10/04/11(Tue)22:15 No.16524113
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    Or should that read "The victims?"

    No matter. We're in this now.

    The buildings on either side of the street are going to be our BATTERIES. People who weren't good for much else are going to become dragon shamans. They don't need high stats, they just need to show up. Marshals will be trained the same way. 2nd level marshals don't actually NEED charisma, their major aura functions without it (based on level). Marshal major auras are wonderful things like damage reduction, damage boosts, melee and ranged boosts, and AC boosts. And save boosts. Really, they just freaking boost.

    We're going to fluff it that they're watching the war intently and shouting out warnings and good info. We figure, 24 people will become marshals and dragon shaman (5 marshals to every 3 dragon shaman, set up in redundant circles in all three buildings at the windows in a pattern which will overlap the carnage zone, so the frontliners will get 5 marshal aura boosts and 3 dragon shaman boosts regardless. HOPEFULLY we can keep things from falling apart, the redundant boosts will help, the dragon shaman healing will help keep everyone up and moving) That'll give us: Damage reduction 1/-, +1 to attack in melee AND ranged, +1 AC, +1 Damage from the marshals, and another +1 melee damage, another DR 1/magic, and fast healing 1 (up to half your hitpoints max) from the dragon shamans.
    The dragon shaman will ALSO be warlocks. We're going to try to fluff it as draconic powers manifesting in bizarre ways. "They say everyone has a little dragon blood in them". That will help us survive, and keep the villagers from killing each other afterwards. The dragon shaman/warlocks (1/1) will also be reduced . That extra +2 to attack (+2 Dex, +1 attack) means something. They don't need strength anyway, and they'll be harder to hit if it comes up.
    >> OP 10/04/11(Tue)22:17 No.16524142
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    Each 8-man team of aura boosters will also have two meat shields with two handed weapons. They will also have a weak healer (better than nothing) who will have the main goal of stabilizing anyone before they die. The dragon shaman healing auras will then pick them back up from the negatives.

    That leaves us 14 people, one of which is Miss Beverly the schoolmarm. +1 rapier, high int, weapon focus with it? We were going to make her a swashbuckler, but 2nd level swashbucklers don't get the int to damage, so it's a waste. She's going to become a duskblade. +2 BAB, +1 rapier, +1 focus, +1 magic weapon... She won't be on the REAL frontline, but she's a backup frontliner who can cast true strike a few times.

    13 people left. Warlocks, battle sorcerers with sonic orb wands, and clerics with scrolls of useful cleric stuff and some big-gun healing for emergencies. Sniping out of barricaded windows ideally. We'll see if we can spare a few people to dedicate themselves to reinforcing barricades should they start to fall. We also want to stick at least one dedicated healer and one dragon shaman with a healing aura in the schoolhouse with the survivors, as an emergency heal-bot area.

    We're still going through stuff looking for other bright ideas, but that's the battle strategy as it stands.

    The Cleric, Archivist, and Wizard are all going to be flying. 60 foot move speed, able to get out of harms way. If we can crunch the numbers, there'll be scrolls of fly for me, the paladin, and the dragon shaman as well.

    The wizard will float above us dropping sonic-bombs and being our eye-in-the-sky. He's also going to be saddled with the responsibility of keeping the magic flowing with his scrolls and wands (those he didn't hand off to the trainees).
    >> OP 10/04/11(Tue)22:20 No.16524180
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    The archivist is going to get everyone a +1 to attack and saves against undead AND abberations for the combat. MAYBE a +2, if the rolls are well. The archivist will also be flying, with the intention of dropping weak heal-bombs and keeping his eyes peeled for the slaymaster. When he sees him, he's going to let the cleric know, and the two of them are going to fly-by attack him with some bestow curses. If the initiative works out in our favor, they can both get him BEFORE he throws up his magical defenses, which would be sweet. 50% chance of inaction AND -4 to attacks if they both curse him. There'll be scrolls of sound burst and spiritual weapon for any incorporeal kythons with phase organs (hopefully there won't be more than one ).The cleric and archivist both CAN drop heal-bombs, but we have some wands of cure light wounds, and hopefully they'll be able to use their spell slots for other useful things. The cleric will also have turn-undead uses, which we will need.The Paladin is going to be buffed up as high as we can and keep his mount in reserve, save his smites for when he thinks they'll do some good, and have some lay-on-hands for stabilizing healing.The dragon shaman is going to keep their initiate aura up as we go into things, so we'll ALL have +2 to initiative. After the combat starts, they'll either get us +2 damage, DR 2/magic, or fast healing 2 (half hitpoint max). It won't stack with the other dragon shamans, but if we need an extra edge in one area, they can make it so. They're a copper dragon totem too, so they can spider-climb at will and give us acid resistance 10 if needed. Since a kython might have an acid-spitter weapon, that could come in handy. They can also use a 3d6 line of acid breath weapon (useless against kythons) and have 18 healing 'lay on hands' of their own
    >> OP 10/04/11(Tue)22:22 No.16524211
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    It was night, but a bright moon and a few continual flames gave us enough illumination that we weren't hindered by the darkness.

    We heard them long before we saw them. That was the worst part. The DM would describe what was going on.... it was cold, we could see our breath and the eerie pale lights and unnatural arcane glows making weird ripples on the disturbed snow, our own trenches fading into the distance. We could HEAR chirping, crawling, chattering... the archivist informed us it was only the young and less adept broodlings and juveniles we were hearing. The adults... we wouldn't hear them. We might not even see them before they closed the gap between us.

    Then the bastard started giving us turns. We would pace, ready actions, stare into the distance... making us describe what we did around the table a few times waiting for the slaughter to come to us. I've never felt so darn HELPLESS in a game before, being given a turn and trying to think of something else I could do to help our fight, though there was nothing.

    Then we saw the first of them. The warlocks opened fire, and rolled well. The boosts they had and the eldritch spears started nailing broodlings to the ground, and every few times you'd see a juvenile fall too. There were no adults.

    The wizard and archivist took to the skies. The glyphs of warding we'd set up started dropping sonic bursts on the battle field, stunning kythons and killing/softening them in small groups. The webs slowed them down. Most of them broke away and started swarming in a wider path at that. When they got close enough, the ones with weapons started peppering us with venomous bone shards and acid splashes. We took hits. The dragon shaman threw up his acid resistance, but we considered the early damage to be a poor indicator of our success.

    Taking a small break~
    >> Anonymous 10/04/11(Tue)22:24 No.16524225
    Only me, apparently. I thought the rest of the guys here would be all over this, but I guess the wall of text scared them off.

    So. I doubt I can be much help, but there's my view. You've got to keep the whole "instant reanimation" thing, which, unless I read it wrong, should prove to be a royal pain in the ass to these beasties. The horde will have to be dealing with the entirety of it's forward assault hitting them in the flank, along with the ones in the traps and stuff attempting to kill them as well. Your party only has to deal with turning the tide. I do not know how those freaking scary sounding things act, but I'd think at some point their beserker rage mode is going to be directed away from the village due to the sheer amount of death and destruction you guys are going to wage on them when they hit you.

    So each dead wave of beasts may become your best weapon. If it isn't instant regen, and they just lay there for a bit... Well, good luck dealing with the reborn horde. Yikes.

    Epic story in any case.
    >> Anonymous 10/04/11(Tue)22:26 No.16524251
    Oops. Thought you were done posting. Curse you, iPod.
    >> OP 10/04/11(Tue)22:28 No.16524265
    It's cool, thanks for reading.
    >> Anonymous 10/04/11(Tue)22:31 No.16524309
    Sounds like you have the makings of a plan already. Some thoughts for you.

    How much artillery do you have? It occurs to me that any Kythons you kill in the midst of their lines are going to become very real problems for the Kythons themselves, especially if you can pick off some of the bigger ones. No sense wasting an undead plague, I always say.

    How quickly can your fighters and/or artillery drop the Slaymaster? Getting rid of him as soon as he takes to the field is a priority, and having Fly up gives you the option of engaging him quickly.

    How healy is your cleric? Would it be possible for him to stay with the NPC front lines while the fighters and artillery picked off choice targets? The more and more powerful Kython zombies you can create amongst the abberations, the more broken up their attacks will be against your nameless citizens.

    Hell, if you leave a few walled outside the town between waves, you may even be able to use *them* as the front line against the invaders. And if you play your cards right, you might be able to gather the zombies that're already surrounding you in front of the oncoming swarm.
    >> OP 10/04/11(Tue)22:35 No.16524346
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    The first wizard "died". The DM rolled it true, right in front of us. 90% cover on a target from 80 feet away... bone shard to the face. 1 damage, 6 CON damage on a guy who only had 6 hitpoints. The healing auras actually picked him back up, and he fought for another minute before the secondary CON damage took him down to zilch.

    Still no adults.

    We started swinging at the juveniles. I managed to sneak-attack a few with acid orbs and literally just "POP" them. that felt good. Then I got bit on the arm and slashed to the nine hells by a kython adult. We hadn't even seen them, but the DM said they hid until they got past the last trench, fair and true. We started seeing more in the incoming wave after that. I survived it though, and downed a potion.

    The paladin shone like a bright star, truth be told. Lucky lucky rolls. Critical hits left and right, high damage, blocked almost everything that tried to hit him. Shrugged off lots of the stuff that did with damage reduction from the marshals.

    There's lots going on that I'm not explicitly saying. The wizard popped sucker-targets with sonic orbs, the villagers kept peppering the enemies with 1d6s, the first of the adult kythons fell, ect. We were taking damage, but we were SURVIVING it, and taking tons of those bastards down in the process. I'll stop describing the generic warfare here. Monsters died, we got hurt and healed, monsters started coming BACK to life, to get killed again and complicate matters. Kythons fought zombies, zombie kythons bit kythons before being torn into 6 separate pieces, celestial badgers got stepped on as living roadblocks....

    (accidentally posted this as a separate thread, that'll teach me to use noko
    >> OP 10/04/11(Tue)22:36 No.16524361
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    We saw a lineup. 5 adults and 3 juveniles ended their turns on a clean row.... in one of our traps. It wasn't something blatant, it was just that sooner or later, a bunch of swarming enemies were going to wind up giving us a good swing. We hand-axed the ropes holding up one of our trap poles, and BOOM, kython-kabob under a heavy wooden pillar covered in jagged metal and wooden spikes. some of them survived, but pinned, and the paladin cut their heads off (no roll, he had to use actions to do it, but our DM likes to let the numbers slide when you're running a 3 foot steel blade into a pinned monsters face).
    We managed to get another bunch of them under another poll, but after that, they started staggering their waves, tore down two of the polls themselves, and got a circumstance bonus to their reflex save to avoid it when we tried it again.

    The paladin bullrushed a few adults into the spiked trench. 5d6 piercing damage and a pinned kython each time. One tried to bullrush HIM into it, but he cut the suckers head off with a critical hit instead
    >> OP 10/04/11(Tue)22:37 No.16524367
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    Two incorporeal kythons, one adult and one juvenile. They split up and ran THROUGH us, through the walls of the buildings on either side, and started chomping. We heard the screams. The buildings were fortified enough that we had trouble getting into them.
    The 50% miss chance made them ridiculous. The juvenile fell, but not before taking a few people with him.
    The adult, however, decimated the building he was in before we could do much. Took some heavy licks for his trouble (including from me, firing through a window with sonic orbs and a few sneak attacks... some of which missed entirely do to the incorporeal nature).

    Then he ran through the walls again and out into the open battlefield.

    The paladin got in two hits that avoided the miss chance. Heavy ones. Like I said, he rolled well tonight.
    The cleric sent a spiritual sword after him. It dropped the monster, but not before it slashed through the wall and tore a wizards face off.

    It fell near the doorway. Miss Beverly stabbed it in the throat for good measure.
    >> OP 10/04/11(Tue)22:38 No.16524382
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    The wizard got slaughtered. The archivist took heavy hits, but managed to stay in one piece. The wizard just got hammered with bone shards and acid splashes. Even after using a scroll of energy resistance, he just couldn't keep in one piece. he finally fell to yet another bone shard (which only deal 1 damage :-\ ) and came tumbling out of the sky onto the cold hard frozen ground. Died on impact, no chance of healing. The DM starts passing him secret notes.

    A few rounds later, he gets up.

    Now, it turns out, whatever's causing the undead to rise has a nasty streak. Most things that come back to life are mindless carnivores. Mook zombies and 'ceramic' skeletons (easily killed, that is :-p).
    Powerful people? People who are more noteable than your average blacksmith or wild wolf? People with a large number of class levels? Yeah, they come back to life as something bigger. Something SENTIENT. And something downright sadistic.

    The wizard spoke to us while it aided our enemies, and fought us. It said...awful things. The afterlife, the cause of the undeath, it's big. And bad. And more than some horrible plague or negative energy pulse... It's not some necromancer with a new trick. We don't know exactly what it is, but "Eil Ei" (aisle-eye), as it called itself, has us convinced that this is not a happy time to... uh...exist.

    We managed to hurt it enough to scare it off. But it's got the wizards gear, it knows how to cast the wizards spells, it remembers everything about US, and it DOES NOT LIKE US.
    Or anyone. Anyone still breathing that is.

    So, to quote our paladin, "Wow, that sucks".
    >> OP 10/04/11(Tue)22:40 No.16524404
    Why you no read story /tg/?
    >> Anonymous 10/04/11(Tue)22:56 No.16524569

    I cannae read any faster captain!

    Continue, OP. I'd love to see how this turns out.
    >> Anonymous 10/04/11(Tue)23:00 No.16524612
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    Srsly, this is like an Eragon-level story. It would make a decent book with lots of work.

    Also, celestial badger. Wat?
    >> Anonymous 10/04/11(Tue)23:15 No.16524738
    pic related
    >> The Slaymaster OP 10/04/11(Tue)23:17 No.16524764
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    Oh boy.

    We didn't see him coming either. He managed to dodge the alarms, came at us from a side (over the top of one of the buildings) and went right into the freaking fight.

    The cleric and archivist WERE both successful at cursing him, in between his turns no less, so by the time his turn came, any magical defenses were too late. 50% chance of doing absolutely nothing each time he came up to bat, and -4 to attacks and saves and pretty much everything.

    His next at bat? Do nothing. I managed to get in a sneak attack sonic-orb, the cleric managed to hit him with an inflict-wounds spell, and the archivist flew off screaming at us to get the hell away from it. The townspeople peppered it, and we were amazed at how effective our tactic was.

    The problem is, a slaymaster who's half as effective can still F***ING kill you and F***ING eat you as an afterthought. One turn he's doing nothing, the next turn he beats the cleric into the DIRT and kicks him across the street into a wall. The cleric hit negatives, but the dragon shaman aura brought him back to conciousness, and he healed himself.

    The paladin charged and gave a good smite evil. I debate turning tail and running, but instead hit it for another sneak attack.

    Then the slaymaster turns to me. Hits me, grapples me, and rolls for damage. It rolls...max. No kidding. 35 damage, right there. I was already a little roughed up, and didn't have THAT many hitpoints to begin. He brought me to -12, just like that.
    >> OP 10/04/11(Tue)23:21 No.16524804
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    The DM described it as "One quick jerking squeeze" and I'm a ragdoll. The slaymaster pitches me across the street too and starts fighting the paladin. He rolls well, manages to seriously mess the thing up and dodge a lot of its hits and took light damage. But in the end, the paladin falls into negatives and the slaymaster starts battering the front door to the school (the dragon shaman ran in, pulled in Miss Beverly (who was trying to charge it) and slammed and baricaded the door... none of us blame him in the slightest). The slaymaster is still taking blast damage from the snipers, but we're screwed right? dead wizard, dead rogue, cleric with 2 hitpoints getting torn apart by kythons, paladin in the negatives (looks dead, but is actually CLIMBING in health thanks to the surviving dragon shamans) and a dragon shaman who's drawing blanks on battle strategy.

    Oh. The archivist :) And our last good trap. THE HAMMER.

    As a final-day last-thought trap, the cleric made the hammer. It's a big dumb-bell shaped stone something. The heavier end is braced with wooden pillars, and it's resting in the rubble on a pivot point. The archivist, despite being down to squat hitpoints, swoops through the carnage, grabs the ropes out of the rubble, and flies hard, pulling, tearing out the wooden supports.
    The heavy end immediately falls to the ground hard (killing an adult kython that chased the archivist). The momentum sends the thing up, up, JUUUUUUUST OVER the peak where it looks like it might stand proud.....and CRASHING DOWN onto the slaymaster.
    away... we honestly didn't know. If they decided to start hitting the weak spots in the rocky shell with acid, we would be screwed. They'd get in and slaughter us.
    >> OP 10/04/11(Tue)23:23 No.16524827
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    That was our suicide switch, intended to hit flush with the front of the school and seal it in stone. We would send one brave (and dead) person charging for the ropes, hoping we could survive a few days in the stony tomb and then dimension door out, to try to rescue the survivors. We would also be praying the kythons wouldn't decide to just start tearing away... we honestly didn't know. If they decided to start hitting the weak spots in the rocky shell with acid, we would be screwed. They'd get in and slaughter us. Like I said, that was our "what do we do now?" suicide plan. But we didn't count on a slaymaster paying all his attention to beating in the front wall while our flying lunatic of dark knowledge sent a huge stone face onto the area. Splat splat goes the big angry bug. Our DM was actually a little shocked. Not SURPRISED, he knew about the hammer switch, he just thought the chance of us going for it then was non-existant. But the fight wasn't over. Some of the kythons broke ranks at that, scattering, no slaymaster rallying them. Some adults, and a decent sized swarm of littler ones stuck around. The place was in shambles. The schoolhouse was almost immpossible to get in our out of, but the chokepoint turned to work in the kythons favor instead :-\. With only 5 foot cracks in our out of the front wall (the slaymasters huge form kept the stone from sitting as flush as we had planned), the snipers became less useful. The cleric got shredded, and the kythons were trying to pour into the schoolhouse by tearing at the barricaded windows on the second floor. The snipers could only get one at a time now from each spot. It actually looked like we were totally toast, despite our good fight. But as all this was going on, so was something else. Something our archivist was watching with some magical vision, confused and amazed
    >> OP 10/04/11(Tue)23:26 No.16524854
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    As the fight was going on, the DM started on me. (we didn't need secret notes past a certain point, I'll mention where).

    "Roll a will save".

    I was now in the realm of ghosts and spirits. The ethereal. But not THE ethereal, a twisted and injured one, whatever was going on WAS big. ALTERED PLANES OF existence kind of big.
    As a ghost walking around, I could see some rough forms of the real plane, and a bunch of dead bodies... and I could see other spirits. Kythons included. None of the spirits, allied or not, could hurt each other. Everything passed through everything else harmlessly. The DM noted that my +1 dagger was the only thing that felt like it had any weight whatsoever...
    I saw spirits being dragged back into their bodies kicking and screaming. The bodies then winked out of this plane....couldn't see the undead. For whatever reason.
    My will save was just high enough to resist coming BACK to life (I rolled a 4, one higher than I needed the DM said). The DM described it as sliding backwards towards it, as if I were on ice. I felt an evil presence trying to erase and dominate my thoughts, all I felt was the urge to maim, hate, hurt, and more importantly, KILL, and leave corpses in my wake.
    I managed to stop it just before I hit my corpse. I wandered, confused as to what to do here. Making will saves to stay dead, knowing it was a matter of time before I rolled a 3 or lower.
    I saw the dead kython with the phase organ. He was trying to go corporeal, but only could for a few seconds at a time. No one noticed another kython in the 'wave' blinking in existence for a few seconds...

    I took a potshot stab at him with my dagger....
    >> OP 10/04/11(Tue)23:39 No.16525005
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    And it worked! my magic dagger was officially the most powerful thing here, everything else was just mist.

    Note: To TRY to compress this already huge post down, I'll go into speed-description here rather than posting another 3 pages of it.

    I cut the phase organ off the kython, and tried to use it, but was even worse at it than him (apparently non-kythons can't actually really use that stuff). The archivist noticed a confused rogue blinking into existence for half-seconds though. We went out of secret notes, as the archivist knew what was going on and could relay it to the survivors later anyway.

    I saw the slaymaster come climbing out of his battered body. He charged me, and realized it did nothing. Then he started fading back into HIS body...
    ...and I jammed the dagger in and twisted. His physical body shook, twisted, threw the stone block off of him with a terrible roar, went silent, twitched, ect... He couldn't come all the way back with me riding him with a magic dagger in his 'spine'.

    The survivors watched in horrified confusion as the body convulsed, before I finally dealt it enough damage that the spirit winked out of existence altogether. No more slaymaster.

    Seeing their slaymaster leader threatening to come back to life? The remaining kythons scattered in terror.

    But then what of me? I was still making will saves. And I finally failed one.

    What happened next was sheer awesome on my DMs part. He swears up and down that he didn't plan this, that it just made sense when he saw what was going on.
    >> OP 10/04/11(Tue)23:40 No.16525017
    You still reading /tg/?
    >> Anonymous 10/04/11(Tue)23:42 No.16525035

    F5ing at the speed of light.

    I probably shouldn't as this laptop is new. But I *will* read the end of this story, one way or another.
    >> Anonymous 10/04/11(Tue)23:42 No.16525037
    >> OP 10/04/11(Tue)23:45 No.16525062
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    The DM gave me a REFLEX save. Something a rogue could be expected to make. A reflex save for the purpose of activating the kython phase orgasn as I was sucked back into my body.

    My temporarily physical form couldn't be pushed back into my real body. The 'essence' trying to dominate me faltered, broke, and was ejected as the return to unlife temporarily failed. My spirit was pushed back into my dead frame, but the evil evil thing trying to hitch a ride was forced back into the nothing.

    I heard it, cursing me, promising me unspeakable horrors, telling me it 'wasn't done with me'.

    So that's that. I'm undead, the paladin is battered, the archivist and dragon shaman pulled through. The villagers are greatful, though still mourning their losses. The FREAKING HUGE kython force was actually scattered. They're still dangerous, but so are the zombies.

    The villagers are....waryingly accepting of me being there with my allies, just as they're warily accepting of me. My friends suspected a trick, the archivist interrogated me in a dark knowledge-esque way, the paladin pinged me for evil/good and found I was still good, and I'm not spitting curses at everyone and promising them a world full of the walking dead.

    So they're letting me stay with them. The paladin promised me that if he started thinking I was less than good, he wouldn't hesitate to smite me fast.
    The villagers are too grateful for everything we did to not thank me, but they are certainly keeping their distance.

    We went up a level. The archivist was actually kind enough to learn Gentle Repose to keep me from rotting, though I did have to physically stitch my wounds shut. He also knows some inflict spells, and is going to make me a few scrolls for healing.
    >> OP 10/04/11(Tue)23:46 No.16525075
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    The wizard character is now an NPC, and no doubt we'll be running into him again. The force that was supposed to take me over is looking for revenge too, the DM informed us. And the kythons have not forgotten our existence, even if they ran scared.

    The wizard PLAYER is going to take over Miss Beverly the duskblade :D. He (she, whatever) gets a "Hey I'm now a PC!" XP boost up to 6th level, and the DM promises he'll close the gap between party members as fast as possible.

    The cleric player is going to have to roll up a new character, and is thinking of going factotum. If I know my DM, that means we'll run into him in the kython caves... Not a bad way to weave a new character into an established group, I say.
    >> Anonymous 10/04/11(Tue)23:51 No.16525129
    Wow, your DM is awesome OP.
    Personally, I would of stabbed myself with the dagger after taking down the slaymaster (that is, if I wasn't given the reflex check option)
    >> OP 10/04/11(Tue)23:52 No.16525144
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    Aside from the level jump, we also got some other stuff. Not a lot of gear, but it's worth mentioning. We've got 14 doses of adult kython venom extracted from dead bodies. We scavenged a bone-shard hand crossbow which will turn bone fitted into it into tiny little piercing darts. 1 piercing damage only, but it can also hold poison naturally and automatically coast each dart with the poison/venom loaded into it. The archivist is holding onto it for the time being. Figures it might come in handy, despite the low BAB. The archivist suggested ("dark knowledge" as fluff, really the DMs direction) that he could reinforce the paladins armor with kython carapace. The paladins shield now has a mundane boost of +2 AC with no noticeable weight increase. Kython shell is good stuff. His full plate also has a mundane boost of +1, and his outfit is now dark and spooky (no shining armor here folks). One of the zombies that came shambling into town was some kind of arcanist in life. The paladin was squeamish about looting a random corpse, but agreed that being wasteful of supplies in such hard times would do no one any good. The zombie didn't have MUCH, but some good stuff. A spellbook - The archivist is going through it looking for stuff he can learn. It's mostly arcane stuff, but some the spells are also on divine spell lists, so he's going to copy those. Then we can sell the spellbook for some good cash if we ever find a place that would want it. A ring - Bonus arcane spell slots for spell levels 0, 1, and 2. Straight to Miss Beverly. .
    >> OP 10/04/11(Tue)23:56 No.16525182
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    A necklace - dull tarnished chain with a strange circular pendant. Turned out to give the wearer and anyone in a radius +1 to will saves. We figured the dragon shaman should get it, since we're all trying to stay in his radius anyway. Turns out, the DM wasn't going to tell us outright what the pendant really did unless we were smart enough to do that. The pendant ALSO gives the dragon shaman +1 to his auras, above whatever his class would make him project. I like it, a lot, personally. It's a clever little item. Miss Beverly also turned out to have a decent nestegg saved up, but not a lot of real gear, so the duskblade player is really running lean until we get to a place that actually has stuff for sale. I'm generically undead with no LA or adjustments. That's pretty darn good as it is, though not without its troubles. The phase organ? It's still attached to my spirit. Once per encounter, I can go incorporeal for one round. The DM said I might be able to get better at it with feats/levels/time. The phase organ also has some secondary effects. I've got kythonish spirit residue on me. Once per day, I can make a dose of adult kython venom fit for coating a weapon or arrow or something. I can also SPEAK with kythons, but I've already checked, they understand me and I understand them, but they will have absolutely-jack-crap to actually do with me. No profound sense of kinship in the slightest. That may sound like a lot, but remember I'm a rogue in an undead heavy campaign, heh. Looking back, you could get the impression that our DM tries to give us all something cool every time he gives us stuff. Not true, but I think he was inclined to give us all SOMETHING after what we just went through. Also, while I'm here posting about this, I might as well mention a great freaking scare the DM got out of us.
    >> OP 10/04/11(Tue)23:57 No.16525202
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    We, the 4 surviving players, (with the new duskblade schoolteacher along for the ride (with swashbuckler levels no less, the player took them on level up )) have collected our wits, organized our gear, patched ourselves up, and tried to figure out what to do next. We decided to check out the mountains with the kython caves, naturally. It's the LAST place we want to go, but it's also the most logical next step in trying to find out "Just What The Heck Is Going On Here Gang?". We tracked the kythons back through their warpath, but got sidetracked. Not too far from the village, we found a little wooden cottage. It was ransacked and shredded, and the doorknob had the same pattern stamped into it as the dragon shamans sparkly new necklace. We figured this was the arcanists home, the kythons tore him apart, and he got up afterwards and happened to trail towards the village (probably drawn by the living kythons in fact). We're all pretty noble and virtuous by nature in this campaign, if not specifically PIOUS. Robbing the dead feels yicky. But the cold hard truth of the matter is, it's the dead of winter, we're on an island infested with undeath, and we're dealing with monsters so fearsome they make us STOP worrying about the aforementioned undead. he's dead, we're not (er... most of us.) We need whatever we can scrape up here. So we head in, and yeah, we have nothing to say in our defense. We were going to loot everything valuable like starving rats to help cover our rear ends when the next wave of trouble starts.
    >> OP 10/04/11(Tue)23:58 No.16525223
    I won't be able to finish this story(in this thread at least). I'm no where near done

    What do /tg/?
    >> Anonymous 10/05/11(Wed)00:00 No.16525241
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    Massive wall of text, but entertaining text nonetheless.

    Just give me a bit to catch up reading.
    >> Anonymous 10/05/11(Wed)00:01 No.16525247

    Screencap it or archive it or something and run with part two tomorrow.
    >> Anonymous 10/05/11(Wed)00:08 No.16525304
    This sounds like a brutal and dark, but rather fun and entertaining campaign.

    I'd like to read more of this in the future if your schedule permits for a bit of storytiming.
    >> OP 10/05/11(Wed)00:09 No.16525321
    It gets better

    Could someone Archive this for me? I can probably continue it tommarrow
    >> OP 10/05/11(Wed)00:15 No.16525376
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    So, we're exploring the cottage very quietly. The roof and some walls were torn apart, so snow was starting to blanket over everything. We found a lot of useless spell scrolls, some good stuff like coinage, medical supplies, a few potions (a lot of them frozen and cracking the glass containers they were in, but a lot still usable, though unidentified). We found one of our DMs notorious calling cards, the "Magic Item with no directly applicable use" that we wind up figuring out what to do with. In this case, it's a coin that, when flipped, will change the pattern engraved on it so that it always lands heads. Except that if it initially lands on tails, the pattern takes a good 5 second to change, and does so visibly and with a series of faint clicking noises. useful, right? I'm hanging onto it though. I'm a rogue, it's a magic coin. That's, like, what I'm all about right?

    Anyway, through this whole thing, the DM is doing a good job creeping us out. A cold and dark cottage that someone actually LIVED in not two days ago, suddenly barely recognizable as a home. A lot of morbid detail. We had a pretty moody setup going here.

    Then, we find 'it'. The arcanist had some kind of weird construct, something like the rest of us had never seen before (archivist included). It was battered and partially disassembled, apparently by the kythons. It was also covered in strange markings, runes, glyphs, symbols, text fragments (on its forhead, etched in faint dwarven runes, "thus unbound unfettered and felled"). Ect.

    Nearby it, what looked for all the world to be some strange flute made of the same material and in the same fashion, though not covered in the markings or runes.
    >> OP 10/05/11(Wed)00:17 No.16525389
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    We kind of fixated on the golem naturally (in retrospect, our DM would have tricked us into focusing on it if we hadn't in the first place). We managed to strap the sucker back into one piece. We shrugged and asked ourselves what to do with it, until we noticed that the flute had a detachable series of small black gemstones, which the archivist identified as being effectively "wands" with a single charge and a very simple activation. A little further examination, and he reveals that each gemstone contain a single spell, "repair damage".

    You know darn well what we did.

    So the DM describes the scene, getting more and more quiet. The construct begins to twitch, and jerk. The wooden grain of its frame snaking back together, the cracked stone plating melting into solid pieces once more. He gets real quiet, we're all leaning close together, and he tells us this.

    "Suddenly, the construct springs up in one fast fluid motion, grabbing <dragon shaman> by the shoulders and shouting...."

    And THAT is when the 6th player, the one with no current character, grabs the dragon shamans player by the shoulders and screams "WHAT HAVE YOU DONE WITH THE CREATOR?!?"

    I. Almost. Peed myself.
    >> OP 10/05/11(Wed)00:18 No.16525401
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    It took us five minutes to stop laughing/throwing things/settle back down and get to the game. The player decided to be a WARFORGED of all things. Him and the DM decided behind the scenes that a warforged experiment the arcanist cooked up would be a great new addition to the party. "It" primarily served the arcanist as an assistant during magical concerns, but also as a cook, housecleaner, and entertainment.

    So, now we have a warforged bard in the party. And I thought I was the odd one out

    They agreed that the best way to introduce the new character would be a shocker moment. I'm inclined to agree.

    So there we go. The bard plans (assuming it survives) to become a sublime chord and act as our primary arcane spellcaster, in a sense. And the DM successfully made us wet ourselves by playing one of our group against us. That bastard.
    >> OP 10/05/11(Wed)00:20 No.16525416
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    So to recap the warforged portion of things, we did get him (it) to calm down fairly quickly. Despite the dragon shaman wearing his creators necklace, we managed to convince him that we had nothing to do with what happened. When he found out we were going after the kythons (and of course, having been shredded by them and knowing his 'father' was destroyed by them, is now very very anti-kython) he eagerly joined up with us.

    Of course, that really goes without saying, since he's a player-character :p. His natural armor is also pretty kickin' and enchanted well.

    The party is at that magical point where we realize we can start mutliclassing/prestige classing. The warforged plans on becoming a sublime chord, the paladin is looking to become a death delver, I'm actually gonna take a few levels of factotum to give myself a little more edge.

    Anyway, this has been a few sessions, so I'm trying to keep it neat and trim and give highlights.

    Now, we make our way through the snowy dead woods. There's lots of zombies around, but for the most part, we're taking care of them pretty efficiently.

    Then, we realize, there's trouble. Not trouble in the way you might traditionally think, but worse trouble. One of the zombies isn't shambling towards us. It's watching us. And when it realizes we're watching it? It disappears back into the trees.

    To quote the paladin. "Wow. That sucks".
    >> OP 10/05/11(Wed)00:23 No.16525435
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    It wasn't the wizard, so it's basically foreshadowing that things are gonna keep getting worse for us with this whole 'not 100% dead and angry at you for being alive' thing.

    But we make it to the mountain range, and track the kython trail back to a cave entrance. The zombies (a lot of whom were still shambling for us) cease to be even a threat of a problem when we start climbing the rocks. Zombies aren't the best climbers, fortunately. We're keeping our eyes peeled for... uh, the sentient ones. If there are stronger undead watching us, we don't want them following.

    Me excluded of course.

    I'm sure you can imagine how this goes. We don't want to go into the kython caves. We just don't, prepared or not. But there's not a lot of places to check out, things aren't going to spontaneously get better, and we need to know what riled those monsters up.

    So we head in. We're taking it fairly slowly. I'm on point, cause, you know, I'm the rogue. Not that it really matters, we can't hide from these things the way we'd like to be able to. But I'm undead, along with some pretty sleek resistances, and I can blink ethereal and sprint if I really have to.

    The warforged keeps humming quietly. We keep having to shush him. The archivist is compulsively checking his bone shard crossbow, despite it being useless against kythons. "I don't know, it just makes me feel safer to have it ready."

    We do fight some kythons, but it's nothing like the war. We're doing very well at keeping them under control when they attack us. Never facing more than an adult or two at a time, still have some sonic orb stuff from the battle. Going well.

    We can tell the cave is going downwards, not up, which is making us generically claustrophobic. For some reason, it seems worse to be heading into the black when you're also heading underneath the surface.
    >> OP 10/05/11(Wed)00:24 No.16525451
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    And then as I'm doing a random check for traps (just in case), I notice something scratched into the wall. It's a circular pattern filled with obscure arcane runes that we can't recognize. Not even the warforged who's covered in random obscure runes.

    The archivist is leafing through his notebooks furiously (read: the DM is giving him notes on what he's figuring out after he rolls a knowledge check... I know it's kind of silly, but it really helps with immersion when the character who rolls the knowledge check tells you what's up, instead of the DM telling you himself).

    The archivist, holding up a black handbook and a small rod with a light on the end: "It's... it's a seal."

    Us: "okay, what are we getting at?"

    Archivist: "Blasphemy. It's blasphemy. It's a seal of an otherworldly being, neither angel nor devil." he crosses himself here. "They enter this world through the souls of willing mortals, heretics, and corrupt us to unknown ends".

    (Now mind you, we all know what the binder class is, but good golly I was impressed with the archivist players acting here. Impressed enough that it was creepy.

    Duskblade: "So there's something down here in addition to the kythons?"

    Archivist: "...if I didn't know any better... I'd say the kythons made this."
    >> OP 10/05/11(Wed)00:25 No.16525468
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    So we press on, very uneasy. Mind you, the whole time, I'm trying to talk to the kythons, like some kind of warped ranger (I wasn't even interested in diplomacy with them, creepy monsters, but the archivist correctly reminded me that I was probably the first mortal *awkward pause* uh, the first material creature to even understand what the kythons were saying, so I had to try). They won't have anything to do with me. They just won't. I try telling them we only want to find out why nothing will stay dead, telling them to back away before the bloodshed, asking them what the seals we keep finding on the walls mean. They just hiss curses at me, and either dissapear into the smaller sub-caves, or attack violently.

    But as we descend, we notice the kythons are actually thinning out. What that meant was still open to interpretation.

    Then we come into a massive chamber. We're on a ledge overlooking it. It goes easily 30 feet down and 50 feet up. The room is around 100 feet to a side, give or take.

    And there are undead kythons pinned to the walls, cippled with no limbs, or otherwise incapacitated. A zombified kython with no lower half crawls up the wall at us meekly.

    There are also seals carved EVERYWHERE. Scratched right into the stone, overlapping each other, seemingly for dozens and dozens of different vestiges.

    We're all rolling spot checks. The archivist makes it first.
    Archivist: "...Everyone get ready to run for your lives."

    A 'slaughterking' kython. The grand daddy of grand daddy kythons. The kind that kill slaymasters from boredom.

    To quote our paladin: "Wow. That sucks."
    >> OP 10/05/11(Wed)00:32 No.16525537
    Still there /tg/?
    >> Anonymous 10/05/11(Wed)00:32 No.16525543
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    >To quote our paladin: "Wow. That sucks."

    I like your paladin.

    I'm still here reading OP, keep it going!
    >> Anonymous 10/05/11(Wed)00:33 No.16525554
    But of course.
    >> OP 10/05/11(Wed)00:40 No.16525609
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    The slaughterking? It's scratching the ground. (Now would be a good time to remind anyone reading that slaughterkings are more intelligent than a human being by a wide margin (20 INT)).

    We don't even know if it's seen us. Then, it hisses, in that strange clicking hiss that only I can understand (read: the DM gave me a note) "Leave this place now."

    I tell the group. The archivist tells me to try to talk to it (while we're all backing towards the entrance). I'm actually picturing this scene. We're god knows how far underground, surrounded by undead kythons and blasphemous religious symbols. I just say quietly, barely a whisper "I don't think I can". I was serious, I'm trying to think of what to say to this thing, and I'm just terrified.

    The archivist reminds me that I'm the only one who can even try. So I managed to say one word.

    The kython turns to look at us, growls quietly, and goes back to scratching. After a few moments, the area in front of him lights up. We see, what looks like a JESTER with dozens of arms spring out of thin air, juggling dozens of tiny objects.

    Of course, this is a real vestige, but we don't know that in character.
    Vestige: "Sorry there guv'na, no pacts today, otherworld's closed up shop. going out of business, huge sale, everything must go! *insane cackle*"

    Kython, still speaking in growling clicks and hisses (which the DM actually did, knowing I'd just tell the group, and wanted to do a quiet angry hissing voice for it): *angry hiss* "How is this happening."

    The vestige stops juggling, rubs his chin ponderously, and leans to the kython before saying very slowly, and very confidently. "Because we. Want. Out."
    >> OP 10/05/11(Wed)00:43 No.16525623
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    And with a huge insane grin, the vestige turns from the kython and looks me dead in the eyes. Says in a boisterous friendly grin "I'm still mad at you!!!!"

    And then winks out of existence as fast as it came in, while the kython pounds the ground in a fury and tears off one of the undead kythons heads, throwing it at us, and scattering away into some dark hole.

    Sweet merciful macgilicutty.

    Anyway, to tighten things up a little here, we press forwards, and down through the dark hole the slaughterking went in. Everything was covered in slime, there were bones and dead body parts everywhere. By a few checks revealed that they weren't human, or even surfacers bones. There was apparently a whole eco-system that went much, much deeper into the caves, of which the kythons were only a part.

    We found the slaughterking deeper down, checking over a bunch of scratched in runes that were, apparently, his notes. He wasn't interested in the surface, he wasn't even interested in killing us (though he said repeatedly that he would kill us if we didn't leave).

    I managed to convince him we would gladly leave, in one piece, but we didn't know what was going on and could he please just tell us anything. We got some facts out of him.

    There's a lot, lot more vestiges than anyone, scribe, scholar, cleric or binder has ever heard of. In fact, there's millions. Billions. Countless. Most of them are weak, powerless, but they still exist in the 'nothingness'. No sensation, no communication. Nothing but black. Inky timeless black, forever.
    Kythons (who were originally created by fiends trapped on the material plane) weren't just a fluke experiment. There were seeds of intent lain in their race. The demon prince Orcus intended to use them, in ways unknown, to reclaim the vestige tenebrous from the nothingness and reclaim the measure of divinity he achieved. Kythons have some innate knowledge of binding, but don't actually do binding themselves, they just know about it.
    >> Anonymous 10/05/11(Wed)00:43 No.16525624
    Still posting, OP?
    >> OP 10/05/11(Wed)00:44 No.16525631
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    Whatever's going on (the kython didn't know, and is trying to find out), it's big. Something's wrong, the tether of the planes are fraying, and vestiges have apparently found a way to push themselves into the ethereal plane, hijack peoples souls, and use them as more than just temporary pacts. They're piggybacking back into reality on them and taking them over.

    Even insects and rodents are coming back, because any vestige that finds a way in is TAKING it, regardless of how insignificant. Even the eyes of a spider are better than no eyes whatsoever. The weak ones are degenerate and can't really be called 'minds' in any sense. They're just pushing into reality blankly to get away from the 'void'. Those are the shamblers. They kill for no reason other than to make more paths in.

    The more powerful vestiges are trying to piggyback in on more powerful souls (read, higher level characters and powerful creatures). A more powerful soul makes a more powerful 'ride', and lets them retain their sense of self, but more or less consumes whoever their ride was. They don't keep their powers, but they get the minds and full knowledge of whoever they come in on, and keep their own minds as well.

    It's possible that a powerful enough soul would let a vestige keep its own powers through the process. But they aren't worried about that. They just want to EXIST again.

    A lot of powerful vestiges are out in the world now. Some are still there, and at least one is still willing to make pacts and doesn't wish to leave the void. The others are scrabbling to get a way out of it. They would all love nothing more than to kill you dead and give another vestige a ride into the world.

    And we know tenebrous is still a vestige.

    So uh, yeah. To quote our paladin yet again: "Wow. That sucks..."

    And it does. It does indeed suck.
    >> OP 10/05/11(Wed)00:46 No.16525647
         File1317789968.jpg-(309 KB, 750x1000, kang_with_strider___talislanta(...).jpg)
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    Of course, as long as you guys post that you are reading, I'll continue posting

    The kython ran down another hole eventually, but promised that if it saw us again, or if we hassled it in any way while it tried to figure out what was going on, it would shred us to ribbons.

    We had a hard time convincing the warforged not to attack the kython. All he wanted to do is kill kythons.

    We came back to the surface in dreary silence. We were all kinda stunned sick actually, we have no idea what to do here.

    We made it back to the village, and they let us rest there for a while. We also went to another village (me in a heavy black hood and only coming out at night, and we managed to convince the warforged to act like he was just a golem under our control to avoid real trouble beyond a 'what the heck' reaction). Refreshed our supplies, got some gear for the duskblade (who the DM has allowed to come up to 7th level with us now).
    >> OP 10/05/11(Wed)00:48 No.16525660
    With that, the first leg of the story is over. There is more or less 3 parts to the story

    I'll pick up posting again in a bit, don't let the thread die please!
    >> Anonymous 10/05/11(Wed)00:50 No.16525672

    I've got to get to sleep, but if you want I can archive this, in case it dies we'll have it saved if you want to start another thread.
    >> OP 10/05/11(Wed)00:51 No.16525684
    Please do
    >> Anonymous 10/05/11(Wed)00:51 No.16525686
    What's a vestige?
    >> Anonymous 10/05/11(Wed)00:53 No.16525700
    Oh hey someone beat me to it.


    Vote this shit up
    >> Anonymous 10/05/11(Wed)00:56 No.16525732
    I can
    I'm trying to finish a paper and have nothing better to do.
    >> OP 10/05/11(Wed)00:57 No.16525736

    The souls of extremely powerful deceased creatures and entities. Binders bind them to their souls so that they can invoke a fraction of the vestige's power. You can read up on them in 'Tome of Magic'
    >> Anonymous 10/05/11(Wed)00:59 No.16525747
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    waiting on op
    >> OP 10/05/11(Wed)01:05 No.16525791
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    The archivist asked us if we'd mind returning to the mainlands instead of exploring the rest of the island. He wants to get to church and pray with his brethren, but also to report what he's discovered and try to get some backing from the church at large for us to continue our explorations on the subject (though we admit to not being sure where to go from here).
    We also need to let them know they're missing one semi-famous cleric, and that the paladin is officially leaving his 'path'. Staying virtuous and noble, and remaining with the church, but will no longer advance as a paladin itself. The DM is letting him keep his abilities in this setup, which we all think is fair.

    So, we start sailing back to the mainland. It's not a pleasant ride. We see a lot of undead sea creatures actually. We killed a few undead sharks that gave us trouble, and we actually saved a school of dolphins from a zombie killer whale (really, the paladin saw a zombie attacking a school of friendly dolphins, and just went APE on us, tore off his full plate, swung out on a rope, dove and started fighting the thing in water. Naturally, we all helped after that).

    We thought. We saw. An undead blue whale. SWEET. MERCILESS. ASMODEUS. Save us now. Just thinking about that makes my back shiver. Tiny wooden sailing ship, UNDEAD BLUE WHALE. oh god.

    We don't know if it was still alive, something else, or just our eyes playing tricks on us, cause we weren't attacked by it. Gave us all the heebie jeebies though.


    We make it back to the mainland. We're sailing for port, cloudy day, releived to be getting away from the undead infested waters (especially before the nasty storm the captain smelled in the air hit).

    I don't know why it didn't really hit us.

    Undead infested island.

    Ethereal plane broken.

    Undead in the waters.
    >> OP 10/05/11(Wed)01:06 No.16525803
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    I guess we really just weren't thinking about it as hard as we should have been. Because we docked in port, and tied the ship up and whatnot. We swung off it, and went with the captain to find the harbor master to let him know we were in port (and we were paying for the docking anyway).

    The place was empty. No one around. We peered towards town? no signs of life. We started getting a really uneasy feeling. We went in towards town a little ways (the captain came with us)? Nothing. We climbed a belltower. Took a look around the town. Noth- wait. There's someone. "Hey, what's going o-" the duskblade starts to shout, before the archivist clamps a hand over her mouth and pulls us all down so we're laying prone.

    Archivist: "we're in trouble"

    And then? We hear a single zombie moan angrily. Followed by about a thousand more moans from every direction.

    We managed to barricade the door to the belltower, and the doors leading back up to the tower portion itself. We had a single scroll of 'fly' left over from the war, and we used it on the paladin and sent him flying to look for somewhere we can head to. He found that the church was barricaded pretty heavily, and that a few other buildings, mostly homes and shops, were boarded up and might have people in them too.

    We just have to fight through streets literally flooded square to square with zombies to get there.

    To quote EVERYONE. "Wow. That sucks."
    >> Anonymous 10/05/11(Wed)01:07 No.16525813
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    >I don't know why it didn't really hit us.
    >Undead infested island.
    >Ethereal plane broken.
    >Undead in the waters.

    >> Anonymous 10/05/11(Wed)01:11 No.16525854
    >> OP 10/05/11(Wed)01:12 No.16525860
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    Our next session started in the same spot the other left off. We're pinned in a rather plain belltower, the streets are pretty much flooded with zombies. There's random houses that are boarded up, and the church is heavily barricaded, but we have no guarantee that anyone is actually in these places.

    We're at the top of the belltower, the wind is picking up and it's obviously about to storm hard. The zombies are circling us. They're not completely thick around the belltower yet, but they're COMING, and it's just a wall of corpses past the few gaps anyway.

    The relatively weak barricades we threw up start to give, and then finally let go with a whimper. The zombies come shambling in, moaning hungrily. Lots and lots of them. Even if they're all mook-strength, we're going to have a hard time with the numbers alone.

    The duskblade, no hesitation, jumps up, grabs a wooden beam, and gives the rope holding up the big heavy metal bell a quick swip. It falls, tears up the internal structure just a teensy bit, and pancakes a bunch of corpses. It also acts as a choke-point in the bottom of the tower itself, so we basically are seeing LINES of zombies coming up, instead of mobs. So that's a little good, but we're still in bad shape.

    The archivist comes up with an idea, and gets the DM to agree to it 'behind the scenes' (read: in notes).
    >> Anonymous 10/05/11(Wed)01:12 No.16525861
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    Ok what EXACTLY is going on in this image?
    >> Anonymous 10/05/11(Wed)01:14 No.16525887
    sole recipient of hyperpolymorphine coming out of a one-inch pipe

    yes, the rest of her had just finished slithering out of there- or maybe she's going into the pipe, fuck if I know
    >> Anonymous 10/05/11(Wed)01:16 No.16525902
    Woman who can basically contort and compress her body so that way she can appear as anything/sneak in anywhere

    40k bullshit
    >> OP 10/05/11(Wed)01:17 No.16525913
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    Now, in our group? Prepared casters tend not to prepare all their spell slots unless they know something's coming up. If we're about to trek through the woods, they'll fill their slots with buffs and useful stuff of course. If they know they won't get a chance to prepare spells later, they'll fill it up with what they think will come in handy. Otherwise? They leave their spell slots open. It still takes time to sit down and ready them all to be cast, but personally, I kind of like that. It makes magic something a little more cinematic and a little less "machine gun"ish. Spells take time to prepare, so if you have the time, you can prepare what you need. Otherwise, be ready with your best guesses.

    Our archivist has his spell slots unprepared. So what does he do? He touches the paladins shoulder (in and out of character) and says "Buy me some time. I need to pray."

    The dragon shaman, leaning over the railing and looking down at the corpses groaning upwards at us, says "Yeah, we ALL need to f***ing pray".

    So the archivist kneels in the corner, prayerbook open, wind whipping throughout the wall-less area we're in, while the rest of us try to find ways to make ourselves useful.

    The paladin rushes down the stairs (actually cackling 'heroically', would be the best way to put it) spinning his sword above his head. Takes up a natural chokepoint on the stairs and starts trading blows with corpses. The Duskblade/Swashbuckler readies herself behind the paladin and curses about not having a reach weapon. The dragon shaman keeps a little distance, but gets in aura-range of the paladin and puts up some damage reduction for him. The warforged bard sits calmly at the top of the stairs and begins a creepy flute song (...), and I perch on the stairway higher up and start plunking stuff with my crossbow.
    >> OP 10/05/11(Wed)01:18 No.16525929
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    This goes on for a while, the paladin is taking some injuries, but is still fighting like a pro. The bodies are piling up in front of him and slowing the zombies down, but also confusing matters some (they all look dead anyway, I can't tell what I'm chopping at! It's just a wave of teeth and rotten faces)
    Finally, the archivist shouts down "I'm ready, I still need more time!"

    And starts climbing outside to get to the pointed roof of the freaking belltower. In what's about to become a torrential downpour. Lunatic.

    I ask what in the nine hells he thinks he's doing, and he says "Hemorrhaging divine magic, just get me time!"

    The thing is, he wasn't just casting spells. He was giving spell slots, but he was also asking for a miracle in a way. He's perched up there, clinging to a lightning rod (!!!) and reaching up towards the sky. Fog and vapour are drifting past, and he's running his fingers through it, mumbling chants and giving up his spell slots. All of them. For?

    The storm breaks. The DM makes him roll a reflex save (failed) and takes heavy electrical damage, and is temporarily deafened, but survives it. Slides down the rooftop weakly, the bard grabs him and pulls him in, and the downpour begins.

    The downpour with faint but present traces of holy water throughout the entire cloud system. Oh yeah.

    Apparently, the archivist got his miracle. He gave up his spell slots for the day... ALL of them, to pour as much divine and personal energy into the air as possible. He cast Bless Water a few dozen times in every spell slot he had available (except 0 level) and prayed that it would distribute throughout the clouds. And it did.
    >> Anonymous 10/05/11(Wed)01:21 No.16525951
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    >Raining Holy Water

    Your DM is awesome and your party is awesome and this whole campaign is fucking awesome.
    >> OP 10/05/11(Wed)01:25 No.16525986
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    It wasn't KILLING anything, it was too diluted. But the zombies were flailing and collapsing in divine agony. The more vaguely-not-stupid ones shambled for cover, but most of them just collapsed groaning in fury.

    And it got us what we needed. With the warforged bard carrying the injured archivist (yeah, not anything in D&D rules, but the DM and us all agreed that he wasn't going to be sprinting after getting hit by lightning, high level or no), we broke for it. We fought viciously through the zombies still in the belltower and broke out into the rain. Heavy heavy rain. Heavy...holy water rain. Hmmm, seems like we're forgetting something, seems like, seems....


    So I start screaming in agony too, much to everyone else's surprise. Luckily I'm a player character. I'm taking divine damage (1's not even dice, and sporadic at that, but still). I manage to put on my gloves while we run and put up my heavy black hood. I also dig through my packs and manage to find a plain cloak to hold over my head, which doesn't do much, but the "one divine damage" thing came less often.


    So we make it to the church and start hammering the doors and shouting as intelligently as possible. "Please, we're alive, let us in!"

    And? After a moment, we hear running towards the doors. A slot opens up, and we hear a lot of confused conversation, but the guy at the door says "Go somewhere else!" Another voice behind him shouts "Open the door Gregor!" Enter a shouting match. He's refusing to risk opening the locked door, people behind him are agreeing, people behind him are shouting to open it anyway, we can't leave them out there, it's too dangerous, open the god **** door, it could be a trick, ect. We're shouting at them to open it, it's not a trick, for gods sake the zombies are weakened but still COMING FOR US.
    >> OP 10/05/11(Wed)01:27 No.16526000
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    Me? I'm shrieking in burning divine pain. The paladin, in a panic seeing me in pain, starts slam-kicking the door to get it open. The group gets even more riled up, the screaming is reaching a peak, the zombies wails are getting closer, angrier, and hungrier.

    Dm: "<silverclaw> you take one more divine damage"

    Me: "Oh F*** IT! I go ethereal and through the door, ready for trouble."
    Everyone, DM included: ....*jaws dropped*

    Anyway. I ask if I catch 'Gregor', the guy at the door off guard for a sneak attack. The DM says, "You just turned into a spectre, floated through the door at 60 feet a round, and dropped back into a solid shape with a thud. You're darn right you caught him flat footed."

    So I elbow him to the back of the head, unarmed attack, sneak attack subdual damage. With the sneak, it was enough to send him way down, down for the count.

    I throw the wooden beams back and start unlocking the door. The paladin kicks it in, breaking the last few locks, and in we come. A big wild eyed guy with glistening black armor and a sword and shield (also glistening black), a freaky rune carved golem holding a singed and injured dark-eyed archivist (who, really, are creepy no matter how you cut it). A dragon shaman who's starting to show traces of lizard, and... well, I guess the duskblade schoolmarm with a rapier still looks pretty normal, but drenched.

    We immediately slam the doors shut and start re-barricading them. I'm sizzling like a smokebomb, and start tearing at my holy-water soaked clothes and stumbling and screaming in a pained panic. The warforged sets the archivist on a pew and makes sure he's okay.
    >> OP 10/05/11(Wed)01:29 No.16526021
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    So, now I'm basically naked. And dead. And smoking with holy "acid". And stitched together.

    Someone in the crowd: "She's one of them!"

    Paladin: "No she's not!"

    Someone else: "Who they heck are YOU?"

    Paladin: *readies sword and steps between me and the crowd* Someone willing to die defending the innocent!

    Crowd: "You killed Gregor!"

    Other part of the crowd: "No, he's still breathing!"

    Someone else in the crowd, pointing at the warforged: "What the hell is THAT THING?!"

    Warforged, calmly: "I'm a housekeeper."


    So, anyway. I managed to scrounge up, what basically amounts to a hobo outfit from the dry miscellaneous gear we had in our packs. A lot of nothing, tied cloth, cloaks folded into each other and held together with pins. My armor class sucks, but at least I'm not naked.

    We managed to get the crowd convinced that we were the good guys, somehow, but they remained pretty divided and not many of them trusted us. We got the archivist healed up, but he was completely out of magic. He's basically down to dark knowledge as far as class abilities go.
    >> OP 10/05/11(Wed)01:31 No.16526040
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    The dynamics of the crowd were fairly interesting, as was their situation. They'd been in the church for days and days, no one trusted each other, they still weren't sure what the heck happened, they were out of food for the past few days, a lot of them were dying or disappearing.

    It was actually a little confusing. Not that we couldn't tell what was going on, it was just that the DM did a good job of feeding us information second-hand, with commoners bickering at each other and contradicting each other.

    Then Gregor started coming around, and that just made things worse.

    What we established was that:

    No one trusted us. Especially me.
    There was no food left in the church.
    People kept disappearing or dropping dead.

    Now, I'll condense down a lot of this part, not because it's not interesting, but because it's a pain to keep straight in conversation, let alone typing it all down. The game went murder-mystery on us. We're talking to people, trying to establish who knows what/was where/likes who/trusts who/is lying/isn't lying. It's an uphill battle since they don't like us anyway, and don't feel compelled to tell us a lot to begin with. The duskblade is making more progress than the rest of us.

    Finally, we start figuring out what's up. The duskblade starts accusing two women of being the murderers, and they freak out and start crying. A guy, (Levain was his name) starts getting in her face and growling at her, how dare she be trying to stir up trouble when there was already too much of it going on, she should be grateful they don't throw us through the windows and back to the zombies, ect.
    >> OP 10/05/11(Wed)01:32 No.16526046
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    Duskblade: "My hair's still wet?"

    DM: "You're all drenched, except for <silverclaw> who took the time to dry off specifically because she was burning to death."

    Duskblade: "I wring out my hair casually, catch a handful of the water, and throw it in Levain's face."

    ...Oh HELL yes. We figured it out (well, she did. Well, the player (he) controlling her did. Whatever).

    Levain SCREAMS, the same way I screamed, and falls back clutching his burning and smoking face. The crowd immediately backs away from him with gasps and screams. Levain bares his fangs and charges the duskblade.

    Yeah, Levain was a vampire. People weren't just being killed in some random pattern, they were being EATEN. The archivist and duskblade collaborated information and figured out that much. No one knew who the vampire was, but the duskblade was trying to draw him out, making him go on the offense before he got put on the defense. It worked, and he was exposed.
    The interesting thing? Levain wasn't part of this undead swarm. He'd apparently been a vampire for a good decade, and this situation was very bad for him. He had feeding grounds, but no good way of covering his tracks.
    >> OP 10/05/11(Wed)01:33 No.16526054
    Done for tonight guys, I'll continue this shit tomorrow
    >> Anonymous 10/05/11(Wed)01:36 No.16526076
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    Thanks for the storytime, OP. This is great.
    >> Anonymous 10/05/11(Wed)01:48 No.16526166
    should we bump thread alive?
    >> Kender Rights Activist 10/05/11(Wed)01:50 No.16526180
    Are you the origional writer or just posting from the thread on GITP?

    It's a good story either way, just wondering.
    >> OP 10/05/11(Wed)01:55 No.16526206
    You can let it die, I'll continue it tomorrow and link back

    Read first post
    >> Anonymous 10/05/11(Wed)01:59 No.16526228
    You uh...

    You also misspelled academic.
    >> Kender Rights Activist 10/05/11(Wed)02:01 No.16526245
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    ....I'm also a fool. Fancy that.
    >> Anonymous 10/05/11(Wed)02:35 No.16526432
    I rarely post, but I'm dropping in just to say this much:

    Bravo, to you and your entire group. This sounds fucking awesome, and you're all fucking awesome for being in it. Can't wait to see another one of these threads.
    >> Anonymous 10/05/11(Wed)02:39 No.16526459
    First response here. This is bloody epic. Saved.
    >> Greyheart 10/05/11(Wed)02:47 No.16526523
    Sweet mother of any gods there might have ever BEEN. Seriously, this story is FREAKTASTIC and I am hoping you come back to tell us MORE!

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