Serpent's Skull in Eberron

I Can't Believe It!

I can’t believe it, we’ve let another powerful serpentfolk escape us alive! First it was that damned priestess, Yarzoth, in the bowels of the lost temple on Smuggler’s Shiv. Now, a powerful mage in the shape of a humanoid crocodile has eluded us. Someone – Golan I think? – said it was a powerful beast called a Rashaka.

Yarzoth was a powerful foe, fought in the bowels of a hidden temple on Smuggler’s Shiv. Her mental domination of our companion Chydak distracted us enough to give her the upper hand and all we could do was to subdue him without hurting him too badly. And since she was ready for our attack, she held her own against all of us pretty handily. The bronze door traps she had rigged temporarily captured both Pol and me under their tremendous weight. Her summoned undead minions were just an obstacle, easily overcome, but when she started casting her spells we were fortunate to have Joffa to state their effects. Dadak and Pol had skeletons of their own to battle, but with the additional poisonous snakes she summoned they seemed to stall even Dadak’s momentum. But her defensive spells were only a stopgap and the battle soon turned our way. Unfortunately, she had one last trick up her sleeve; when she slapped her bloody hand against the huge statue of a bat winged and footed woman her form turned gaseous allowing her to fly across the room avoiding all our desperate attacks and out of the chamber. Her escape was only temporary. We’ve had enough clues to follow her this far, across most of Xen’drik, to this lost city.

This Rakshasa was cunning, to say the least. Somehow, in the night, as the rest of us slept, he convinced Leif that he was a friend. Leif’s limited experience with sentient beings of this age seems to be a detriment and a weakness that the rest of us must keep in mind. His tale of meeting this “person” was instantly suspect to me, sure, there was a slight possibility that it was the truth, but with so many serpentfolk about, I felt there was no way this could be a free agent. The fight and his attempt at convincing us he was in danger from the serpentfolk within the Rakshasa’s arena was proof of that. He was a worthy foe, and I enjoyed meeting him in battle. The lightning that flashed from his hands was deadly and I fear I may have to change my blackened and scorched coat. If it weren’t for the strength of mind my bardic training provides or the charmed life that I lead, I am sure I would have fallen to that evil being’s suggestions and mind control. Ultimately, invisibility let that wizard-creature retreat into Saventh-Yi. Curses! We’re going to need to make a detailed search of this district to verify that he has indeed retreated.

Which brings us to serpentfolk: The discovery of a live serpentfolk on Smuggler’s Shiv was remarkable – previously they were widely known in Khorvaire as creatures lost to history. But, our discovery of clues that Saventh-Yi could be found again was even more astonishing. That led us to Xen’drik and Tazion and another live creature from out of history. One is a coincidence, two is reality. Then, shortly after arriving at this lost city, we found more bodies and evidence of a long standing feud between the serpentfolk and the charu-kai. Four bodies, led to many more inhabiting this island. Upon closer examination of the serpentfolk warriors corpses shows that they seem to have degenerated into something more primal than what I would expect from a race that once ruled the whole continent and survived the Giants from history. Is this what has become of their once strong race? I suspect there will be many more. The signs and carvings that we have found so far while exploring the area seem to be pointing us in the direction downward, down, below this city where somewhere, I suspect, we will find them – perhaps even a thriving colony!


k——————-

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Serpentfolk!

Finally, a foe worthy of my time and effort. After endless monkeys, my Elysian Bronze gets to drink the blood for which it was forged. The hated enemies of the Azlanti. They’re abominable form slinking back towards the daylight that the gods saw fit to deny them all those centuries ago. I will find them, bring them into the darkness and bind them. Or something like that. That actually reminds me of the message inscribed on a cheap ring I once owned. I wonder where I left it. Oh well, I’m sure it isn’t important now.

We march toward the spear at the center of the island. It’s atop a large building of some sort. Seems important. The serpentfolk slither in the shadows but I cajole my companions to action. This is after all, the only reason for us to be here. Righteous Anger will win the day; the gods demand it. I force my comrades ever forward. They whine of the comforts at camp. I am annoyed, but also sympathetic to the weakness of their flesh. I hope to accelerate the cleansing of this place. I patrol the perimeter of the great spear and call for all challengers. A few interested parties approach, but they are easily cut down. Must be a probe sent my the enemy leaders. I hope now they realize the trouble I intend to bring to them. When dawn breaks, I hope it reveals a sea of serpentfolk massing all around. How I wish the Commander could see me now.

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Cool Side of My Pillow

I hate to complain, but…

Can’t a man get some sleep around here?

This day has gone on forever. We woke up early – at least too early for my liking – so that we could take this new guy Kasada Lewin wanted to saddle us with on a tour of Saventh-Yi. We showed him the “sights” but he didn’t really have any more insight about anything than the rest of us. Mostly is was prophesying about his god Iomede, but that’s alright, he was easy to tune out. He seemed really confident when we took him to the plaza where we found the recently dead serpentfolk, but once again the mystery eluded us. You’d think that a man of his advancing years would be resting his bones around a warm hearth rather than following us around this lost and hidden city, but I guess everyone needs to make a living!

I don’t recall whose suggestion it was to capture some Charau-kai to interrogate about the serpentfolk corpses we found on that large plaza, but we quickly came up with a plan, executed it well, and ended up with two monkeys to grill (figuratively). Turns out that the center isle of Saventh-Yi has some type of serpentfolk colony on it and they have been causing trouble with the apes. I could see the eagerness in Leif’s eyes as the news that live serpentfolk were to be found within a short walk from us; I do not know which he hates more, serpentfolk or monkeys.

I find a hatred for serpentfolk rising in myself that matches Leif’s. I’ve felt this since we first encountered one of their kind in Smuggler’s Shiv but over the last several months it has been growing within me. I wish I had paid a bit more attention about ancient history while I sat at my tutor’s knee – my parents certainly paid enough for him – that I would have some clearer idea of why they are back. An ancient civilization on the rise can only cause trouble. All I can brood over is that they would probably want to rule again. I fear for what that would entail. Khorvair already has a thriving civilization; there is no need to drag up something from the past to supplant it. I can only hope that our expedition’s backers in Eleder and Stormreach are spreading the word of what we have found here because if they have not, it is up to me and my companions to halt the serpentfolk’s advance.

Now, I hope to get some rest tonight. My pillow is just like I prefer. Leif is on patrol. Kailia is an excellent lookout. Dadak is sniffing about. Goland is resting his old bones somewhere nearby. The night may yet scare up some more of these easily defeated – hell, the Charau-kai seemed to be able to handle themselves – serpentfolk, but I’m not worried. They don’t seem so bad, more like vermin infesting the place.

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On Divine Favor

Having dispatched the Serpent Men (a sight I thought was gone from this world), we made way to the Island District’s Ziggurat. I would have enjoyed questioning these Serpent Men and learning more about them. Indeed, if they are as evil as they seem, we would do well to research this enemy of righteousness and purge their lair. Sadly, Leif and Dydak are ruled far too much by their passions and saw only bloodlust. Perhaps it is best if some future efforts are undertaken without their knowledge.

Nevertheless, upon reaching the top (and ridding the district of still more serpents), we gained further insight into the Island District’s former purpose. It appears to be a civic or governmental building, one which tended to the administrative needs of the former city. I’ve copied the characters in my journal and will ponder them further as time permits.

Perhaps rejuvenating this city with the power of Iomedae will be the thing to return it to vibrancy. And this administrative area might be a perfect seat on which I can bring forth Her justice. For I have been convinced that She supports my actions.

In the halls of my order, I often looked down on those who sought victory through sword rather than converting through persuasion. But, feeling my blade guided by Her, I must now admit that there is a certain exhilaration I hadn’t expected. It simply signals ever further that Iomedae blesses my efforts to overthrow the vile beings that have taken refuge here and bring about true religion.

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Serpent's Spear

Wir, 3rd of Zarantyr
Brashly marching to the center of the island distruict toward it’s ziggurat, the party discovers that it is surrounded by a vast sprawling building. Undetered, the Party Marches in to the bowels of the building seeking a route to the ziggurat. Their entry did not go unnoticed however and they are waylaid by a trio of serpentfolk. The serpents are no match for the heroes, and the party is only briefly delayed by the encounter.

It doesn’t take them long to find the stairs that lead up to the ziggurat, and the party barely hesitates as they step out onto teh roof of the building before continuing up the stairs of the ziggurat. At the top they quickly overcome the 4 serpent folk guards and with daylight waning, they decide to camp here at the heart of what Goland determines to be the Government District.

As the others begin to prepare to settle down for the night, Leif, needing little rest, decides to make his presence known to all of the denizens of the island. He begins making a circuit from corner to corner along the top of the ziggurant hollering as loud as his voice allows. He hopes to lure more serpentfolk to their death, and lure he does, but not exactly as expected. A jungle mantis is lured by teh movement atop the ziggurat and unsuccessfully attempt to catch Leif by surprise. As leif manages to dispatch the Mantis, he gets his hoped for result, a party of 6 serpentfolk attempts to storm the top of the ziggurat. The battle that ensues is once again quick and decisive in favor of our heroes. With each member of the party providing their own usnique touch to the fight, the 6 serpentfolk are wiped out as easily as the others.

Leif resumes his route along the top of the ziggurat, noting during his patrols, that a large serpentine shape moves within the waters of a flooded amphitheater to the east. The others realize that this is likely to be a long night.

Camp Notes:
N/A

Rumors:
N/A

XP:
13 Degenerate Serpentfolk – 15600XP

15600 XP/4 = 3900 XP each (Dadak, Kreshton, Leif, Goland)

Dadak – 88815/105000 XP
Level 9

Kreshton – 85692/105000 XP
Level 9
Leif – 85633/105000 XP
Level 9
Goland – 81900/105000 XP
Level 9
Chydak – 35000/51000 XP
Level 7

Loot:
None

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Of Monkeys, Snakes, and Adventurers

I feel on the verge of a great discovery, but it remains just out of reach. I’ve copied most of the images and script so that I can ponder them until I have a chance to return to the seven statues.

I’ve also been able to join a small adventuring band. Clearly, a servant of Iomedae will bring benefit not only to their ability to discover new relics, but also to their spiritual welfare through high theology. The tree creature, Lief, appears only to have the barest form of sentience – though perhaps more lies beneath the surface than a few short days can reveal. Dadak’s friendly beast is impressive, as is the manner in which he cares for her. Still, he seems to have an inordinate fondness for animals. Though such creatures are useful, men (and some lesser races like orcs) are the true inheritors of the divine. Animals are merely another tool and Dadak’s sentimentality is unfortunate. His ability to shift forms, however, is a marvelous boon. And then there’s Kreshton. His easy manner implies a vagabond nature. But his fussiness over apparel and the obvious training that has gone into his swordsmanship belies some level of adherence to duty and honor. Perhaps a review of The Acts of Iomedae would do him good. I believe I have an extra copy somewhere…

The monkey-folk have been horribly lead astray toward the worship of a nefarious chaos god. Little more than uncivilized brutes with barely a gutter language, it isn’t hard to see how they could have fallen to such deception. Still, in my communication with some of their number, they recognized the righteousness of Iomedae by calling me Master. After all, do not The Acts teach that all of a servant’s virtue and honor stem from allegiance to Her? Therefore, by acknowledging me as Master, they have only acknowledged faith in a force they do not yet understand. In time, I hope to return and teach more to the monkey-folk. Perhaps they will even be capable of some service for which more civilized beings are not.

The Serpents are clearly hostile. Whether from being lead astray or simply from inclination, it is as yet unknown. Still, we will meet force with force, and their sinister natures with our virtue. My own allows me to empower the more … physical prowess of others. The Serpents will be brought to heel.

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Faith Healing
Welcome, Goland, the self-healing cleric.

Mol, the 1st of Zarantyr
Goland joined the party as the party studyied the Spear of Wrath and discivered the existence of Ilmurea, a serpentfolk city, deep beneath Saventh-Yhi.
Zol, 2nd of Zarantyr
The party investigated the Memorial to Saventh’s Defenders and managed to trap and interrogate a charau-ka about the serpentfolk corpses in the parade grround.
Wir, 3rd of Zarantyr
The party studied the Savenjth’s defender memorial briefly making no significant headway in determining how it might be related to the silver coffer or the vault in the city treasury..
The group then crossed the northern bridge into the island district in the center of Saventh-Yhi. They were ambushed by 4 Serpentfolk, but quickly overcame the guards.

Camp Notes:
3 Discoveries Made (9 Total):

  • The serpentfolk city of Ilmurea lies deep beneath Saventh-Yhi, Saventh-Yhi was built to seal and protect the path to the underworld.
  • When the Spear of Wealth is activated it will allow people in the district to better appraise and identify items.
  • More info about the Meercantile District:
    • Once Saventh-Yhi’s mercantile district, this area was devoted to the virtue of wealth—not only to the process of making money, but the process of spreading riches to others. The city treasury was located here, along with numerous guild headquarters and an expansive marketplace along the lakeshore. The ‘bank’ that the party found was actually the City Treasury. Though the treasury was completely looted on most levels, researchers believe that the vault at the bpottom level of may still contain something of great value.

Rumors:

  • The Hoyuse Tarkanan Camp is plagued with ants.
  • A hobgoblin visited the camp looking for Kreshton and Dadak.
  • Men become better fighters just by spending time in the military district.

XP:
3 Charau-ka Thugs – 3600 XP
4 Dire Apes – 3200 XP
4 Degenerate Serpentfolk – 4800XP
Discovery (The existence of Ilmurea beneath Saventh-Yhi) – 400XP

12000 XP/4 = 3000 XP each (Dadak, Kreshton, Leif, Goland)

Dadak – 84915/105000 XP
Level 9

Kreshton – 81792/105000 XP
Level 9
Leif – 81733/105000 XP
Level 9
Goland – 78000/105000 XP
Level 9
Chydak – 35000/51000 XP
Level 7

Loot:
Military District

  • From Charau-ka Thugs:
    • 2x potion of cure moderate wound
    • 3x (masterwork studded leather, masterwork darkwood light wooden shield, masterwork darkwood club, masterwork throwing axes)
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Notes, XP And Loot
Greg Catches up (kinda)

I’ll back fill some of the Session logs that are missing, but Here’s my catch up post for XP and loots and misc stuff:

Mol, the 23rd of Vult
Attempt to use ring to activate soear.
Explored Bank attacked by Shadows vanquish shadows and explore the depths (Saventh’s Defender Vault)
Camp made discovery regarding coffer
Zol, 24th of Vult
Explored Chimra island
Wir, 25th of Vult
recovery & Discover spear activation.
Zor, 26th of Vult
Explore military district kill some patrols. Interupt meeting between Emerald Claw and Olujimi. camp for the night beneath zig
Far, 27th of Vult
Fend off attacks during the night. Hear howling and fighting to the west (Emerald Claw Camp) Interrupt ritual atop ziggurat killing Priest and many Charauka. Grugonoth inbound.
Far, 27th of Vult pt 2
Grogonoth defeated. Dadak almost killed. Charukai lose heart. Emerald Claw Camp destroyed.
Sar, 28th of Vult
Discovered Legend of Savith defeating Ydersius

Camp Notes:

  • 3 Discoveries Made (6 Total):
    • Spear of Wealth Activation
      • Wealth – the ability to provide for oneself and one’s family
    • The north-eastern district is the Military District and the most liekly place to find more info RE silver coffer. May also relate to vault beneath bank.
    • The Legend of Savith defeating of Ydersius

Rumors:

  • The Emerald claw are freely exploreing the Military district.
  • House Tarkanan has finally shown up in Saventh-yhi and has camped by the cenotes.

XP:
4 Shadows – 3200 XP
Greater Shadow (Bank Manager) – 4800 XP
2 Chimera – 6400 XP
Slycora (Advanced Chimera) – 4800 XP
Discovery (Spear of Wealth Activation) – 400 XP
4 Charau-ka Thugs – 4800 XP
Dire Ape – 800 XP
Olujimi – 6400 XP
4 Dire Apes – 3200 XP
Charau-ka Priest – 3200XP
8 Charau-ka Thugs – 9600 XP
Dire Ape – 800 XP
Akkituk Charau-ka Priestess – 4800 XP
10 Charau-ka Thugs – 12000 XP
2 Dire Apes – 1600 XP
Grugonoth (Half-Fiend Advanced Dire Ape) – 9600 XP
Conquering the Military District – 6400 XP
Discovery (The legend of Savith’s defeat of Ydersius) – 400XP

83200 XP/3 = 27,733 XP each (Dadak, Kreshton, Leif)

Dadak – 81915/105000 XP
Level 9

Kreshton – 78792/105000 XP
Level 9
Leif – 78733/105000 XP
Level 9
Goland – 75000/105000 XP
Level 9
Chydak – 35000/51000 XP
Level 7

Loot:
Mercatile District

  • From Chimera Lair:
    • gloves of arrow snaring
    • potion of delay poison
    • potion of water breathing
    • gold goblet studded with turquoise worth 700gp
    • flawless red glass orb worth 100 gp
    • seven silver rings worth 50 gp each
    • four amethysts worth 100 gp each
    • five bloodstones worth 50 gp each
    • 15 pieces of malachite worth 10 gp each
    • 44 pp, 1,281 gp, 2,373 sp, and 5,172 cp
  • From acid-burned skeleton:
    • handy haversack
    • spellbooks (11th Level Wizard)
    • wand of daze monster (11 charges).

Military District

  • From Charau-ka Thugs:
    • 10x potion of cure moderate wound
    • 20x (masterwork studded leather, masterwork darkwood light wooden shield, masterwork darkwood club, 2x masterwork throwing axes)
  • From OluJimi:
    • These items are large: +1 light wooden shield, +1 throwing axe, masterwork throwing axes (7), bracers of armor +2, leather axe harness
    • javelin of lightning
    • potion of gaseous form
    • fist-sized emerald worth 1,000 gp
    • two jacinths worth 250 gp each
    • 58 pp, 642 gp, 984 sp, and 1,427 cp
    • The lingering odor is a free bonus.
  • From Excavated Island:
    • 5 questionable doses of Stone Salve (25% normal value)
  • From Akkituk:
    • wand of silence (10 charges)
    • +1 spear
    • bracers of armor +2
    • wooden holy symbol of Angazhan
    • 8 gp
  • From Grugonoth:
    • bracers of armor +4 (huge)
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Shines On Me Again

Heh! That was amazing. Everyone came together and did their part in fighting that fiendish, dire, flying ape monster, Dadak almost gave his LIFE! He definitely has what it is that heroes are made of. Twice that monstrosity only focused on him, raining down destruction in the form of bites and two claws, and battering Dadak to the ground, but Dadak survived. Leif, shield held over his head in protection, was actually able to overcome an attack with no consequences; amazing! With mighty swings, Leif held his own, and then some.

I, of course, had my moment. I called down the first attack onto myself by taunting the beast, “Come at me, you damned dirty ape!” and although I was not able to parry any attack on me, I was able to survive its first swoop. I knew I had to keep the beast busy so that Leif could drink some potions and enter the battle and so that Dadak could cast some last second needed buff spells. A quick thrust of my blade scarred the beast and I retreated to a more favorable position near to my allies. But the thing wasn’t done with me yet! It charged forward attempting to bulrush me but its growl of frustration indicated it was not as successful as it could have been. I moved forward, trying to attract its fury onto myself, and I counted on dipping and dodging under any attack. Although I was unsuccessful (and received a bad rent in my clothes) I was in a position to flank with the lions Dadak had summoned from those figurines we had found earlier. Once again, I sunk my blade into its tough hide but it towered above me and with its next swing of its mighty arms, it delivered an awesome blow that launched me ten feet into the air, over a small wall and at least twenty feet down the stairs of the ziggurat.

I missed part of the battle as I picked myself up and rushed back up the steep stairs. I stopped for a moment to heal myself with my wand one last time and then continued upward. As I reached the highest level of the ziggurat, where the battle was continuing without me, I was able to witness Dadak wade into reach of the beast wielding a gigantic axe. Then the punishment from the ape’s onslaught battered my friend to the ground. No! Leif strained against the monster as I sprang forward, within its reach, struck its flanks, and moved away. Another mighty stroke of Leif’s club seemed to stagger the fiendish monster and it retreated, attempting to fly away – I could not let this happen, allowing an enemy the chance to return later is unacceptable. With the last of my spell enhanced speed, I charged towards it, bound into the air with a mighty leap and skewered it with my outstretched blade. It was marvelous! The last time I attempted such a maneuver was on Smuggler’s Shiv when I leapt off a cliff and onto the back of the flying Chupa-cabra that had been menacing us there.

With the sickening sound of coconuts crashing to the ground, the monster fell and silence fell over Saventh-Yi. The crowds of ketches and apes that were rushing the ziggurat stumbled to a halt. Wisely, Leif dragged the fiend’s corpse and threw it over the edge in plain sight of them all. Leif let out a mighty roar and the mob, clearly intimidated, quickly fled into the forests and, I am sure, continued running to whatever safe hole they could find.

The district is most definitely ours. Swordplay and glorious battles won, we rule the day. I am content.

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Faith and Guidance

A missionary trip to Saventh-Yi. “We can think of no one better to spread knowledge of Honor and Valor,” they lied through their teeth. The truth, of course, is that I’ve been pushed out of the order by rivals. I’m under no illusions.

Still, I believe this situation will work strongly in my favor. The new city gives me the perfect opportunity to not only spread the worship of the most Just deity, but also of building a new order. One that properly renders devotion and can be guided – strongly if necessary – by my learned hand.

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