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    Messages in Fire & Shadow RPG
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Fire & Shadow RPG

Welcome, adventurers. Before we begin, I'm going to give you a brief history of the world of Azrakha'an. I may update this, so please keep checking back!

***In The Beginning***
Many different beliefs exist on how the world was created, depending upon which religion you followed.
~For the humans, they believe one god called Runevore created everything and tasked his angelic servents to maintain His creation.
~For the elves, they believe not in the gods. In their eyes, the world was created through a natural force and that fate and destiny willed the world into being, with magic (the natural essence of all things) flowing throughout and maintaining stability in the world. Thus, if one kind of magic becomes stronger than the others, it throws the natural order out of balance and chaos will surely follow. The elves believe all the races have a part to play in keeping this natural balance.
~For the dwarves, they believe in multiple gods, all governing over certain tasks, skills and domains. Angvar, king of the gods, rules over his siblings and keeps them in order. Magnari, god of fire, created the mighty dragons (with Thelvus' aid) and other beasts of flame as well as the volcanoes. Sílthri, goddess of water, gave life to the world by creating much needed bodies of water and all the creatures that call them home. Müngvarí, goddess of earth, made vast forests, woods, plains and mountains spread across the world and created all the creatures that lived there. Thelvus, god of air, along with Magnarí, created the dragons and other flying draconic beasts. He also commands storms and, along with Sílthri, drenches the land with strong rainstorms.
~For the dragons and dragonborn, two seperate draconic gods existed: the the evil Chromatic Dragons worship the dark god Tiamat and the Metallic dragons' god is Bahamut.

***A Brief History of Thesti'lia***
The elves, dragons and dwarves are the true inhabitants of this land. They have dwelled here since its founding. The humans sailed to the realm many centuries later, with tools, food and other goods that they traded with the races they found there. The humans settled in a place called Spireridge Valley, a small stretch of mountains with a wood, streams and small lake. The early humans made their living as traders and farmers, but over the years their influence and numbers spread. Nowadays, you can find humans in most any region of Thesti'lia, with the exception of a few areas that are closely guarded by the races that inhabit them (humans, for example, are forbidden to venture into the deeper parts of the elves' vast forest, nor are they permitted to travel to the more sacred areas of the dwarven mountains without permission).

The elves were once a single community, ruled by a single king and queen, but over the centuries differences of beliefs, ideals and other disagreements created a rift between them. Gradually, the race of elves split into two main groups: the surface elves and the drow. The former are, for the most part, benevolent, kind and believe in equality amongst all races. However, the drow see all other races as inferior and believe they (the elven race in general) are the true rulers of the land because of their nauturally strong connection to nature and magic. The surface elves and drow are ruled by a seperate royal family.

And it is these differering ideals and ways of life that drew them closer with the race of dragons, with the surface elves taking friendship of the more gentle Metallic Dragons, while the drow allying themselves with the twisted, greedy Chromatic Dragons. Thus, a war broke out that lasted over a century, almost destroying the entire realm. This bloody period is known as the Age of Shadow. It ended when an uneasy pact was created, a fragile peace treaty that granted the drow and Chromatic Dragons certain lands. However, the surface elves, Metallic Dragons, humans and dwarves are all aware that, at any time, the drow and Chromatic Dragons will grow more and more discontent with what they have been granted and will seek out ever more land and power, aiming to, in their eyes, take their place as the rightful rulers of Thesti'lia.

That time has now come, though as of yet no one is aware of it as the drow and Chromatic Dragons have yet to openly announce their uprising, but an uneasy air of disturbance shadows the land. Dark creatures are becoming ever more active and bold, attacking and pillaging settlements in ever greater numbers. Threat and danger hangs in the air and the people are growing ever more wary.

This is where the party comes in. You all arrive at one of the four main cities of Thesti'lia, Vangar. It is ruled by a benevolent human called Valoran (can't think of a surname yet!) whose daughter is deathly ill. While riding her beloved snow white stallion, her curiosity got the better of her and she ventured further than was wise. She came upon a cave, the inhabitant not taking kindly to the sudden intrusion. It was a monstrously large wyrm, a basilisk, and in punishment for the princess' tresspass, it bared its fangs and delivered its deadly poison. King Vangar has hired the party to seek an antidote to the basilisk's venom to save his daughter, which can be found in the nearby mountains in an orc stronghold. This is your first quest...
((Any questions you have, please drop me a DM or ask in the Fire & Shadow Q&A thread.))

Posted on 2022-06-10 at 09:33:21.
Edited on 2022-06-10 at 10:40:58 by dragon-soul92

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Hero Forge link:


Race: Elf (Jungle Sub varient)

Class: Shaman

Tradition: Voodoo

Armour: Hide and Bone (AC 14)

HP: 30

Weapons: Spear and dagger


Str 8 (-1)

Dex 14 (2)

Con 13 (1)

Int 8 (-1)

Wis 16 (3)

Cha 15 (2)


Equipment: Spell components in pouches, Explorers pack pack, Herb Kit, Fetish creation kit, pouch of Shrunken fetishes.

Shaman Spell List:

Spells Levels        
Cantrip Light Fire Bolt Poison Spray Minor Illusion
1st Thunderwave Cure Wounds Detect Magic Hex
2nd Barkskin Misty Step Flame Blade  

Shaman Auras: 

 Celerity:       The Shaman and any allies within the aura's effect gain advantage on Initiative rolls, as well as a +10 foot bonus to their base movement

Vengeance: Foes that inflict damage on the Shaman or any allies within the aura's effect take 1d8 fire damage, Dexterity save for half damage. Each foe can only be affected once. This damage increases by 1d8 each level to a maximum of 5d8.

Soothing:    The Shaman and any allies within the aura's effect may expend hit dice as though taking a short rest


Shrunken Fetishes: Voodoo priests are able to imbue fetish dolls and hell hound fetish with animating spirits, giving th edolls life and power to protect and aid the Shaman in combat.


Shrunken Fetish
Small Undead
Armor Class 14 (Natural)
Hit Points: 1/2 Shaman max (15)
Speed 20 ft.
10 (+0) 17 (+3) 12 (+1) 12 (+1) 9 (-1) 8 (-1)
Condition Immunities Poisoned
Senses passive Perception 9
Languages None
Stab Melee Weapon Attack: +3 to hit, reach 5ft.,
one target. Hit 6 (1d6 + 3)
Hound Fetish
Medium Undead
Armor Class 15 (Natural)
Hit Points: 1/2 Shaman max (15)
Speed 40 ft.
12 (+1) 15 (+2) 14 (+2) 10 (+0) 13 (+1) 8 (-1)
Condition Immunities Poisoned
Senses passive Perception 11 (16 if scent based)
Languages None
Pack Tactics. The hound fetish has advantage on
attack rolls against a creature if at least one of the
fetish's allies is within 5 feet of the creature and the
ally isn't incapacitated.
Bite Melee Weapon Attack: +2 to hit, reach 5ft.,
one target. Hit 9 (2d6 + 2)
Magic Items.
The Skull of Astrath. Acts a helmet of tounges.
Talmonis's Spear of Sight. +1 Spear grants ability to see incorporeal beings when held.
Rogroroth's Hide. +1 Armour
Amulet of the forest. Grants wearing either speak with animals or speak with plants. x3 uses per day. Recharge on Sun up.
Snake tooth dagger. +1 1D6 Necrotic dmg & Necrotic dmg resitance 


As the fifth daughter of the tribes chief, she had no prospects or expectations with her life and it had come as no small relief, when as she matured into adulthood the mystic powers manifested within her, and she was able to join the other women of her tribe who had the gift. Under their tutilige she learned about the cultivating and using of herbs, healing, soothsaying, animal husbandry and the way of gift and how it flowed through the world. 

Posted on 2022-06-11 at 11:14:24.
Edited on 2022-08-18 at 02:45:54 by Alverstar

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Azax of Clan Strix

Azax OF Clan Strix

Azahandiraximandirkandirax  (The real but rarely used name.)


Owlin Arcane Archer – Fighter              6th Level


  • HP:   58                   AC:  16


  • Strength: 8
  • Dexterity: 18                    +4
  • Constitution: 16              +3
  • Intelligence: 14                +2
  • Wisdom: 10
  • Charisma: 8


  • Movement: 30’ – walking or flying
  • Alignment: Neutral Good
  • Darkvision: 120’
  • Languages: Common, orcish (A racial enemy of Clan Strix), Elvish
  • Background: Far Traveler


  • Appearance: Azax is an owl-person most resembling a grey and black screech owl.  He is about 5’8” and is covered on his head, lower arms, and lower legs with soft feathers of grey, black and white.  Like most screech owls he does have distinctive eyebrows that are similar to the “horns of a great horned owl", but aren’t quite as pronounced.  He is thin and light weight.  His wings spread about 6” past the tips of his fingers on either hand.  His clothing is finely sewn and patterned leather and light fabrics – owling communities are known for fine needlework.  His clothing is also grey, black and white to maintain his natural camouflage.  When he wants something a bit fancier he adds a red belt and a red sash across his chest with the emblems of Clan Strix on it. 


  • Skills: Stealth, Perception, Acrobatics, Nature, Insight, Survival


  • Fighter Based Abilities:
  • Fighting Style: +2 attack on all ranged attacks
  • Second Wind: Use Bonus Action to regain 1d10+level hit points.  Once per short or long rest.
  • Action Surge: Can take one extra action (in addition to all normal actions) on a turn.  Once per long or
    • short rest.
  • Spell: Druidcraft Cantrip
  • Arcane Shot: Use twice per short/long rest.  Decide after a hit. 
    • Bursting Arrow: You imbue your arrow with force energy drawn from the school of evocation.
      • The energy detonates after your attack. Immediately after the arrow hits the creature, the target and all other creatures within 10 feet of it take 2d6 force damage each.
    • Grasping Arrow: When this arrow strikes its target, conjuration magic creates grasping,
      • poisonous brambles, which wrap around the target. The creature hit by the arrow
      • takes an extra 2d6 poison damage, its speed is reduced by 10 feet, and it takes 2d6
      • slashing damage the first time on each turn it moves 1 foot or more without
      • The target or any creature that can reach it can use its action to remove
      • the brambles with a successful Strength (Athletics) check against your Arcane Shot
      • save DC. Otherwise, the brambles last for 1 minute or until you use this option again.
    • Two attacks per turn
    • Sharpshooter Feat: No disadvantage for long range shots
      • Ignore ½ or ¾ cover on ranged shots
      • On arranged attacks – can choose to take -5 on attack roll, but add +10 to damage.


  • Equipment:
  • Armor:
  • Studded Leather Armor (Ac 12 + dex modifier)


  • Weapons:
  • Longbow: 1d8 piercing. 150/600 range
  • Rapier: 1d8 piercing.   
  • Daggers (2): 1d4 piercing.    Light.  Thrown  20/60. 
  • In the Quiver:
    • Quarterstaff
    • Spear
    • Javelins (5)
    • 80 Regular arrows.


  • Other Equipment:
  • Explorer’s pack: Backpack, bedroll, mess kit, tinderbox, 10 torches, 10 days rations, waterskin.  50’ silk
    • (Rope upgraded.)
  • Antitoxin vial (1 dose)
  • Acid Vial (2)
  • Candles (2)
  • Chalk (2 pieces)
  • Clothes – travellers.
  • Signal whistle
  • spyglass


  • Magic Items:
  • Ring of Feather Falling
  • Quiver of the Archer – like a quiver bag of holding. Always weighs 2lb.  Has three compartments.
    • *Short Compartment – up to 100 arrows or similar items.
    • *Midsize compartment – up to 10 javelins or similar items.
    • *Long Compartment – Up to six long objects such as bows, quarterstaffs, or spears.
  • Longbow +1
  • Magical Arrows – all arrows are one use – once shot (regardless of hitting or missing) their magic is used and they become ordinary arrows.
    • *Arrow of Light +1: Attack/damage +1 and when they hit (or land on a miss) the arrow lights up
      • with the light cantrip. (bright light for 20’ and dim light for another 20’ radius.) 
    • *Arrow of Exploding Ice +1: Attack/damage+1.  In addition to normal arrow damage when this
      • arrow hits it explodes and causes an additional 2d8 cold damage to anyone within a 10’
      • (1/2 with a successful dc 13 dex. Save.) (2)
    • *Arrow of Thunder +1: Attack/damage +1.  In addition to normal arrow damage when it hits it
      • creates a loud thunderous boom doing an extra 2d8 thunder damage to anyone within
      • 10’. (1/2 on a failed constitution save.)  On a failed save they are pushed 10’ away from
      • the arrow’s location. (2)
    • *Arrow of Lightning +1: Attack/damage +1.  When fired this arrow turns into a lightning bolt
      • (the arrow is destroyed) that does 2d8 lightning damage.  (2)
    • *Arrow of the Net +1: Attack/damage +1.  When it hits this arrow creates a large net that
      • restrains and medium or smaller creature. A creature may use its action to make a
      • strength check to break itself or someone else out of the net. On a successful check
      • (dc 13) the net is destroyed.  (2)
    • *Arrow of the Living +1: This arrow is a normal +1 arrow against any creature that is not
      • If an undead creature is hit, however, the arrow explodes with in radiant light
      • and does an extra 2d8 radiant damage to that creature.  (2)
    • Potion of healing (2 doses)
    • Cape of the Mountebank: This cape smells faintly of  While wearing it, you can use it to cast
      • the Dimension Door spell as an  This property of the cape can't be used again until the
      • next dawn. When you disappear, you leave behind a cloud of smoke, and you appear in a similar
      • cloud of smoke at your destination. The smoke lightly obscures the space you left and the space
      • you appear in, and it dissipates at the end of your next turn. A light or stronger wind disperses
      • the smoke.


Concerning Owlin: 

*Because there is no information on the culture of Owlin anywhere, I just made it all up.  


In a nest in the trees there lived an Owlin.  Not a twiggy, damp, tipsy mess filled with old mouse bones, nor yet a hole in a tree with nothing in it to sit down on or to eat:  tI was an Owlin-nest, and that means comfort. 


Owlin are owl-folk.  They do not live in flocks and congregate in large numbers as some other birds types do.  Instead, they tend to live singly or in pairs or small family units.  These units are part of a larger clan, a grouping of a large network of nests into a large colony.  But this colony is spread out over a large area and does not contain anything that other races would view as a city or even a town.  Trading posts do exist – areas where Owlin will come to buy and sell goods and congregate for purposes of government or other group activities, but these public areas are a permanent home to very few.  Instead Owlin will come and go making use of the public facilities as needed.  Still, their ties to their clans are extremely strong and Owlin will fiercely defend their territory.  It just isn’t common for non-Owlin to see a large number of them together.

               Owlin are a very skilled people with many craftsmen and wise elders.  Their homes are called nests and are built in the largest of trees or on the edges of rocky crags.  But they are finely wrought wooden constructions that provide both shelter and comfort.  Owlin homes are very hard for most other races to enter, but when they do they are often amazed at the comfort and hospitality found therein.  Owlin can spend many hours in their nests comfortably contemplating the world. 

               To the other races Owlin are known as skilled craftsmen (In wood and other natural substances), philosophers and archers.  As soldiers they are usually arcane archers, rangers or monks.  Owlin territories are well defended from the sky.  But these flyers also enjoy a great relationship with others who like a simple life and live closely with nature.  Of the major races, gnomes and elves are the closest to Owlin and are often trading partners.  Halflings are well liked but their fondness for meadows leaves them often only on the edges of Owlin territory.  The same is true with dwarves who are frequently found in areas where Owlin live above and the dwarves below.  Their reaction to humans is as varied as the nature of humanity.   

Posted on 2022-06-17 at 21:51:44.
Edited on 2022-06-18 at 13:02:37 by Nomad D2

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Since someone is apparently more ok with links than was originally implied, sheet has been moved here because that listing before was so damn ugly and clumsy. Model for reference available here because I can't add pics from my PC apparently and I'm not sure if that counts as a pic.

We done?

Posted on 2022-06-23 at 12:30:06.
Edited on 2022-06-24 at 13:24:12 by WhomstHasSummonedTom

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884 Posts

The Adventure Begins...

The city of Vangar. A loud, boisterous place filled with many people-both citizens and visitors alike. The city is located in the West of Thest'ilia, an area vastly populated by humans, though other species do visit and trade with the natives.

The building varied somewhat in both size and appearance depending on where they were located: the closer to the towering city wall they were, the smaller and more simple their design was, while those in the centre were vast, ornate works of art. It was therefore not difficult to see which accomodated the wealthy and higher status and which housed the common folk. The ruler of Vangar was a benevolent man who doted on his daughter, Princess Avira. Usually, the king was in high spirits, beaming from his golden throne and settling any disagreements his people took to him. Today, however, his grey eyes were downcast and worry was etched in a brow heavily lined with his years. A large lion, coat as white as the purest snow, was sat next to the king, his feathered wings half-furled on his back as though ready to jump up at at the slightest provocation. The beast sensed his master was troubled and was prepared to defend the king if needed. King Valoran absent-mindedly stroked the silky fur on top of his companion's head, the winged lion giving a soft growl in response.

'Oh, how could this have happened?' He mumbled sorrowfully. 'I always tell her to remain within sight of the city at all times.'

'She is a curious one, Your Highness,' Rílgari replied with a small smile, appearing at the king's other side.

King Valoran sighed wearily, nodding at his sorcerer's words.

'That she is. And while it is good to seek knowledge, you also have to learn when not to stick your nose where it isn't welcome. Did you put out the message?'
'Yes, Sire. I had messengers put them up on every street and billboard. They will not be missed, I assure you.'

'Thank you. Let us hope there are some brave souls willing to take up my request. Your is working?'

'Indeed, Sire.' Rílgari added gently, 'but you know that this is not a cure in and of itself. It merely slows down the venom, but does not completely halt it. I'm sorry, my Lord, but I'm afraid Princess Avira grows weaker as we speak.'

'She is my only child,' King Valoran whispered softly. 'If she perishes, what will befall this kingdom without an heir?'

'I pray we will not have to find out. May the gods smile down on us.'

At Vangar's entrance, a large billboard announced the latest events and one notice, much larger than its fellows, occupied the very centre.

Painted in a large, bold crimson font, it succeeded in its task of catching the eyes of passersby. It proclaimed:

~By Royal Decree~
His Majesty, King Valoran, requests the aid of brave adventurers to assist him an a matter of utmost importance.
For full details, please come to the castle courtyard at 3:30 p.m. and the king shall inform you further.


((OOC: Okay, could you guys get your intro posts up, please? Of your characters arriving in the city, why they are there (they wouldn't have known about the Princess being in trouble before arriving at the city, so there has to be a personal reason why your characters have come to Vangar), seeing the king's notice on the billboard (doesn't have to be the same billboard, there's billboards all over the city) and going to the castle courtyard to get more info from the king. The party members first see each other in the courtyard. That's how you all meet and form the party). Sorry if my opening post wasn't that good, I had a bit of writer's block haha. Anyway, looking forward to your posts! ))

Posted on 2022-06-23 at 15:46:02.
Edited on 2022-06-23 at 16:27:33 by dragon-soul92

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Journeys End - Adventures beginning

Mömhal listened, her brow a criss-cross of confused concentration, the voices were scattered and chaotic, rushing sounds racing though her mind at break neck paces not allowing a single thought or idea to settle for long before changing and reforming again and again. In all her years she had never experienced them in such a wild state, in such agitation. 

 She broke the connection to the voices and looked deep into the fire, replaying over and over again the messages given to her. A image of giant stone trees, with strange creatures dwelling within, a young creature laying ill, others gathered around sadness and grief perminating her mind, a trail of tears to coursing down her cheeks then the image changed more stone trees this time inhabited by large brutish creatures protecting something valuable, something to help the young creature from before. She had no idea who or what all these creatures were, but she did know the voices wanted her to go to them to help. Climbing into the giant broughs of her treetop home, breaking through the canopy cover Mömhal looked over the dark forest into the moonlit sky and faced North, she didn't know how far North she needed to go but go she must. 

 Climbing down back into her home she started to pack a travelling back with all the dust, powders and herbs she felt she would need lamenting on not being able to take everything, she then donned her armour of stiffened hide and bones finally she turned to the altar standing proud against the back wall of her home, the simple stone dias with a few bone and bark bowls and utensils placed carefully upon it vastly downplaying the power and importance it had in her life. Her gaze rose to the skull of the large hunting predator that hung on the wall above the dias, the skull had been loving preserved and decorated with pigments and feathers from flying animals of the jungle, the jaw bones and been sewing together using jungle vines to keep them intact she raised her a hand and placed it onto the lower jaw of the skull and with the other gentle blew some orange dust upon it.

 'Come Astrath awakens your soul to my command' slowly a dim red light flicked within the empty eye sockets of the skull and a deep voice filled the air.

 'So it is our time again young one' this was not a question, he was only woken in times of dire need.

 'Yes, we travel North to where the trees are made of stone'

 'North, beyond our sea of trees a real adventure this time' 

 Mömhal reached up and gently took the skull off the wall and placed it over her head, looking through the empty eyes, feeling the presence of the giant predator's spirit next to her.

 'Yes' was her only response and she picked up her spear and left her treetop home for what would be the last time with this flesh.

**Many months of travelling later**

As she made her way towards the towering pillars of stone she had learned they were called 'cities' and they were the home of other peoples who were nothing like her. Drawing closer she found more and more of these 'people' also travelling along these 'roads' to and from the stone cities.

'Ants' she mused, 'Travelling along spider webs, so many people going about so many lives.'

Astrath snorted 'Glad to see you are enjoying this, but this is no place for the likes of us' he added quiterly

‘Maybe that's why the spirits have guided us here because we are outsiders. Now let's finally see what's inside, I wish to see how they live like this.’

As Mömhal approached the gates, a pair of sentries took notice of her and started to wave and call out to her.

‘What are they saying?’

‘Nothing of interest, you're just not normal folk. They have made a wager as to what you are and now wish to find out who is right.’ 

 With her interest aroused she made her way towards the waving sentries, as she got close they started to talk, but she couldn't understand them, she shook her head and raised her hand.’

‘Astrath you have gone quiet, please what are they saying?’ 

The predatory spirit laughed ‘Just look at them now they realise you can't communicate to them, I feel this way is just more fun.’ 

Mömhal sighed, and seeing the confused faces of the sentries, motioned beyond them hoping to gain access. With a shrug the first sentry moved to allow her past and whilst doing so pointed across the way towards a large billboard.

‘What does that say, is it important?’ 

‘Well, well, well it seems the King is in need of brave adventures. Meeting to be held in the castle at 3:30pm. There is a big reward.’ Astrath translated.

‘King? Castle? 3:30pm? What are all these things, spirit?

‘Ah yes, the young flesh, the unknowing mind, I had forgotten how much fun I can have once you're back in your young flesh.’ The spirit laughed, ‘Come we have much to learn before we can see a King.’

‘See? It's a living thing then. Flesh and blood?’ Mömhal asked 

Beside her the great spirit just laughed.

Posted on 2022-06-24 at 14:35:51.
Edited on 2022-06-26 at 06:41:22 by Alverstar

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A quest finished and another one sought out


Azax arrived in Vangar unsure of what to do next.  He had been drawn out of his families nest and his clan’s land by urgent need.  Young owlin hatchlings and other young humanoids from the woodlands had been kidnapped. He had made it his task to rescue them.  On the way he had made a great friend – a young squirrelkin (Think half human/half squirrel humanoid) sorcerer named Borborybodbodynock.  Bory and he had discovered that there was a group of bandits capturing various kin of lesser known races to use in a menagerie as entertainment.  Horrified, Bory and Azax had rescued the young ones and returned them to their respective people’s. 

               But that wasn’t the end of it.  These slavers were part of a larger group seeking to kidnap and use the young for various evil purposes.  In their first encounter the two young heroes discovered information about how the group had connections in various towns.  Not willing to leave others to such a fate the two had set out to disrupt as much of the slaver’s plans as possible.  The combination of Bory’s magic and nimbleness and Azax’s arrows and ability to dominate the night sky enabled them to track their enemy and take out several cells of slavers in several mid-sized cities around the region.  The rest seemed to pack up and leave in the face of the mysterious assault. 

               It was at this point that Bory decided that it was time to go home.  His sorcerous patron was the Lady of the Critters, a spirit that looked after the smaller creatures of the forests and had desired an end to those who would imprison the weak.  But his place was in the woods.  Azax wanted to go with his friend, but he had never been beyond the woods and hills of his homeland before and wanted to learn more about the places he had previously only seen on maps.  He wasn’t ready o return to the nest and listen to his father’s words again.  Someday he would, but not yet.

               And so the youngish owlin waved goodbye to the squirrelkin as Bory headed back home.  Instead, Azax headed towards Vangar, one of the great cities of the region.  Owlin did not live in cities and he had been surprised by the size of small towns and amazed at the sheer number of people in the smaller cities he and Bory had entered.  He felt drawn towards Vangar, almost like a moth toward a light.  (He was sure that was how his father would describe it with all of the implications of doom that implied.)  He wanted to see such a city.  Plus, based on their findings in the last slaver nest they invaded, it seemed there might be a cell here as well.  That was uncertain and he had little idea of where to look, but it gave him a reason to go where he wanted to go. 

               So, the countryboy went to the big city.  It wasn’t as overwhelming as he had feared – he had experienced enough of cities that while it took things to a scale he had never imagined it was just a bigger version of what he had seen before.  Not surprisingly, he was a bit of a nightowl and he spent part of the nights frequenting taverns looking for signs of a slaver group, but found nothing he could act upon.  He spent the rest of the night soaring the skies at night and peering into the dark alleyways of the city looking for action that should not be there.  He found some (and stopped several robberies and other crimes) but never what he was looking for.  After a couple of weeks he began to wonder what he should do next.  Being a flying vigilante really wasn’t a long-term proposition.

               And it was in such a mood of uncertainty and indecision that he saw the Royal Decree.  A matter of utmost urgency?  Well, that sounded like something worth doing.  And if not, well, he could always turn it down and return to  . . . randomly flying around the city.  It seemed worth checking on.  Brave adventurers?   Azax wasn’t sure he was an adventurer but looking back on the past six months made it seem like others might consider him such.                  

               And so the young Owlin archer decided to look into working for the King of Vangar.  At the appointed time he headed towards the castle to see what this urgent matte would be.  He didn’t fly directly into the courtyard as he had the sense that castle guards would not like the idea of someone simply flying over their defenses and guard posts.  (Guards on the walls of previous towns had never noticed him as he always made sure to fly in high and at night.)  So he arrived at the castle on foot and made his way to the courtyard to see if this would provide the answer to what came next. 

Posted on 2022-06-25 at 20:39:03.

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Flesh creatures having a flesh creature problem?

At first, there had been nothing but darkness as Legion had started to regain consciousness. He had no knowledge of how long he'd been at rest as the closet he had stood in had no windows to keep track of daylight through; though from the thick dust that had gathered within his chamber and on his metallic skin he gathered it had been a long time since Artifice Master Irowandar had told him to slumber until he'd feel the urge to awaken. They had propably hoped that his awakening would be an omen of a new onslaught of below-dwellers, but as he's returned to full consciousness and left the dark closet he soon found out that the drow were in fact not attacking.

Unsure of what to do with him now that he wasn't slumbering in his closet anymore, the elves had sent him out into the world to look for people who could have use for the skills of a relic from the great war. After helping farmers with puny pest problems he had found his way to the big city, hoping to find something more suited for his capabilities.

After passing through the gates as the guards gave him curious and slightly confused looks, the warforged noticed the billboard. "A king might actually have a proper use for me", he thought while he read the large notice, heading for the castle.

Posted on 2022-07-02 at 10:42:04.

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Meeting His Royal Majesty

The guards stood to attention as the party crossed the drawbridge and approached the large oaken doors of the castle wall. The two royal knights crossed their pikes, barring the way, suspicious looks etched on their faces. After a few moments, however, one of them perked up as he realised why the group had come.

'Ah,' he smiled grimly. 'You here on the king's summons to assist him in his most grevious hour? Terrible business.' The knight shook his head, a frown stretching his face. 'Well, go on through. My best wishes to you! May you be successful in your quest and restore peace to Vangar!' The royal knight parted their pikes, granting you access to the castle courtyard.

The large courtyard was decorated with colourful mosaics that cast intricate rainbow patterns over the ground, depicting scenes of heroes from the city's rich and storied history. The centre of the courtyard was dominated by a large marble fountain with a marble carving of a rearing lion in the middle, its mouth open in a perpetual silent roar, wings fully unfurled. Stone benches surrounded the fountain. The stone pillars surrounding the edge of the courtyard were adorned with banners displaying the royal crest of Vangar: a rearing winged lion holding a sword and shield in its front paws, the shield bearing the image of a lilly, which, in Thesti'lia, was the symbol of peace.

Two rows of guards, stood facing each other on the stairs leading to the castle's main doors. Two of them held polished brass trumpets which they blew enthusiastically, the blaring notes announcing the arrival of the king who strode down the middle of the columns of knights. A large beast stalked at his side. As he came to a halt in front of the party, a paige declared,

'Presenting his royal higness, King Valorian!'

The party bowed respectfully to the king and it was then you noticed the creature standing protectively at his side was the same as what was on the royal sygil: a large, snow white lion with a thick, lusterous mane flowing from his shoulders and down his chest. His long, feathered wings were neatly folded across his back, the tips of each feather glinting with gold in the bright evening sun. The beast held himself with pride and poise, but his keen eyes under their heavy brow never left the party. They were strangers and as of yet untrustworthy. The beast was ever vigillant in protecting his human companion. A low growl rumbled deep in his throat as a warning to keep the peace. The king reached down and gently stroked the lion's broad head. The growl ceased, but the stern look he gave the party didn't soften.

King Vangar was a tall man, with a slim frame but thick shoulders that displayed his years of wielding a sword. His face was sharp and angular, but his hazel eyes were soft and welcoming, though they also hinted at his sorrow. A long, silver beard, neatly brushed and trimmed, trailed down his chest with a thin, white mustache under his beaky nose. His hair was as leangthy and as silvery as his beard. He wore robes of deep crimson, lined with intricate patterns wrought in glistening gold thread. A short sword was sheathed at his left side in a golden sheath, silver filligree and cut rubies decorating it. The hilt of the sword was shaped into a lion's head.

When the king spoke, his voice was strong, but there was a slight rasp that betrayed his years.

'Welcome, adventurers, to Castle Vangar. I thank you for coming to assist us in this, our time of great need. My beloved daughter, Princess Avira, is greviously ill, having fallen prey to the deadly venom of a horrific monster: the basilisk. There is hope, however. The antidote lies not far from here in an orc stronghold deep in Spireridge Valley. We would create the antidote ourselves, but alas, the ingredients are rare and hard to aquire and it would take too long to gather them. Longer than my daughter has.' He paused, the expression on his lined face growing ever more sombre. Raising his head to the party again, he continued, 'unfortunately, I do not know exactly where the stronghold lies. Rumor has it, the orcs dwell in the westernmost area of the mountain range, close to the sea. They stole the antidote from a caravan that was delivering it to Vangar. The potion is rare and valuable, you see, and they hope to sell it for easy money.' He shook his head in disapproval. 'Despicable creatures. I implore you to retrieve the antidote and return it to us so my daughter will be well once again. Anything you need for your journey, I will happily provide.'

((OOC: If you have any questions for the king, or any supplies you need, post it in your next post. Or if you want your characters to talk among themselves to get aquainted you can do that, too. If not, please post in the Q&A thread that you don't need to do anything so I can move straight on with the next post.))

Posted on 2022-07-03 at 08:19:11.

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Questions for the King

Mömhal listened to the King's words and to Astrath's translation.
'The Princess is ill and her means of salvation has been taken by these Orcs' The spirit said beside her, 'Though they know not the location of these beings, I also doubt they know numbers or strength. They think they mean to sell this potion so they must have some sort of higher intellect to understand the value of such a potion.'
Mömhal stepped forward 
'kinngg' she rasped the word, said in an unfimiliar langauge it clicked in her mouth and felt thick, followed by what sounded like the calls of a chours of birds before a deep male voice echoed around the courtyard.
'King Vangar, I Mömhal will help save your flesh and blood, children are always precioues but questions I have if you will allow. What confirmation do you have it was these Orcs and not some other thieves? Do the Orcs often pilliage along that perticullar stretch of road? Was much else taken? Is it possible they took the potion without realising its worth and could be bartered with?'
'Also may I meet with your tribes Shaman as while I am trained herbilist and healer, I have no knowledge of your local herbs and flora to which I can use for this task?'
As the words faded away Astrath continued to her 'Are you quite finished? Im getting rather bored of this place.'
'Shush spirit' she hissed 'Is the big all powerful predator spirit getting threatened by a winged cat?' she chided.
She turned her attention back to the King with a smile, when no reply was forthcoming.

Posted on 2022-07-03 at 14:18:33.
Edited on 2022-07-04 at 07:11:29 by Alverstar

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Winged lions, basilisks and missing potions, oh my!

Azax watched the King and his companion come down and speak.  Looking at the banners and the winged creature whose image was emblazoned on them Azax couldn't help but think the lily of peace held by a huge predator.  Peace through Strength.  May have believed this necessary and many have fallen prey to a belief that anything is acceptable if it defends their image of peace.  Lets hope this peace is worth it.  Sometimes strength is needed - was I not just on such a journey?  

With such ideas already rolling through his mind he listened to the King's speach.  Like the quest he had just finished, here again, was a quest that aimed at children harmed.  It seemed worth doing. 

He listened to the shaman with the odd voice ask some questions and then added his own.  

"Sir.I am Azax of Clan Strix.  I am willing to look into this mission but there are more questions.   How far are these mountains and what is the best way to get there?  How shall we travel?"

(He would not necessarily shoot all of these questions off machine gun style but would listen for one answer before asking another.  Overall, these are the questions he would ask.)

"What does this potion look like?  How will we know it when we find it?"

"Do the orcs interact with other groups?  If buying it is possible, do they sometimes intearact with merchants and others?  Would that be a way into their fortress?  Or should we expect to have to sneak or break in?"

"How do you know the orcs took it?  Have they offered to sell it yet or is that a guess?"

"Is there a chance that the princess' injury and the simultaneous theft of the only known cure is not simply an unlucky coincidence?    

"Do you have any other information about this stronghold?  Not location as you have already indicated that, but of its appearance, size or inhabitants?"  

"Most importantly, how long do we have?  Some paths may seem more likely to succeed in acquiring the potion, but require more time than your daughter has."  

"Given what you and your advisors know of the orcs and the western mountains, do you have any suggestions on our route or what gear we should bring?"

Posted on 2022-07-05 at 16:57:38.

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"Your Highness, I am an autonomous combatant unit called 'Legion'. Artifice Master Alaririan built me to counter the former threat of the below-dwelling filth and their affiliates, and rude it may be I would like to inquire if this... potion retrieval is the only thing Your Highness requires my services for?"

Posted on 2022-07-07 at 11:44:11.

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Questions Answered

King Valorian listened carefully to the enquiries directed at him. First to speak was the jungle elf Möhmal. He soon realised, however, that she did not speak the common tongue. Luckily, there was a sentient spirit that was able to translate the two dialects. After listening to the spirit, the king answered:

'Greetings, Möhmal, friend spirit,' he nodded to each of them in turn. 'Indeed I am certain that it was those foul orcs that stole the precious antidote. A band of them attacked and raided the caravan it was being transported in, slaying anyone they encountered in the process-traders and guards alike. One trader survived and informed me of the terrible events. I should show you this.'

Here, the king took from his pocket a very filthy scrap of parchment with runes scrawled on it in a rough hand. The lettering was very smudged and difficult to read.

'It is in Orcish. I had one of my royal scholars translate it. It reads:
"Our tribe will prophet greatly from your unwilling gift. We thank you, human king."
'A rude and taunting message, no doubt mocking and laughing at me,' King Valorian frowned. 'Orcs aren't known for their manners and ettiquette. The rest of the note, written in smaller print, goes thus:
"If you want it that badly, we shall offer to sell it back to you. If you can find our home."
'Of course, I would be willing to pay any sum to save my beloved daughter, but they are orcs. They have a nasty habit of not keeping their word. Or changing the deal at the last minute. So for all I know, I could send knights with the gold to buy back the antidote and those fiends will just kill the knights, take the gold and keep the antidote anyay. You see what a predicament I'm in?' He sighed wearily, shaking his head. 'So,' he continued, 'that's why I have hired you to retrieve the antidote in my place, if you are willing. To answer your other question, Möhmal, the threat of orc attacks has always been a danger on that particular road as it is a major trading route and thus a lot of goods-often expensive goods-are carried along it to Vangar and the surrounding villages. But lately, the beasts have increased the frequency of their raids. As for the reason for this, I know not. I shall arrange for you to meet Rílgari, who is my trusted sorcerer and highly skilled in the arts of healing. Alas, even with his experience, however, he cannot cure my daughter from the potent and deadly venom of the basilisk. You may meet him and receive your instruction before you set off on your quest. He shall inform you on the medicinal herbs and fungi that grow in the countryside in these parts. I urge you to make haste, however, as with every passing hour my daughter's life leaves her and I don't know how much longer she has until she passes into the ether...' The skin around the king's soft hazel eyes tightened and he swallowed sharply.

The next to ask their questions was the young Owlin Azax. King Valorian had encountered these unusual looking owl-people before and had conducted many transactions of goods with them over the many years of his reign. The Owlin were very skilled tailors and seamstresses. Indeed, some of the king's robes were made by an Owlin clan that lived in the vast forest of the east. 'Honoured to make your acquaintance, master Owlin,' King Vangar greeted. 'The mountain range in question is called Spireridge Valley. It is about 6-7 days' travel on horseback. Taking West Spire Road is the most convenient method as it brings you right to the mountains' foothills. You will have to travel through Wyverling Woods to get to the mountains, however.' As he uttered the name of the woods, his voice took on a dark edge. 'The woods are so called because they have long since been the nesting grounds for wyverlings, a creature related to the dragon and wyvern. Wyverlings are smaller than their wyvern cousins. About six feet tall at the shoulder. They also do not have a breath weapon. Still, underestimating them is folly as they are swift on both land and in the sky. Like true wyverns, however, they are rather clumsy on land as their bodies are built more for swooping and snatching their prey in the air rather than stalking and hunting it on the ground. They also travel in flocks of up to 7 individuals. We have had more than our fair share of trouble from them lately, attacking and even eating travellers on the road. It is very unusual for them to venture forth from their woods, however. Before a few months ago, it was hardly heard of to see one flying in the open. Now there have been reports of them swooping about right outside the city. What has caused this abrupt and drastic change in their behaviour? I fear dark times are ahead...' The king shook his head again and recollected himself. 'My apologies, I digress. The potion you seek is in an emerald green bottle, the contents themselves being ruby red in colour. It has a golden stopper. The orcs have been known to barter with unscrupulous traders,' the king nodded. 'Some of them have even had the audacity to conduct their business in my very city, despite strict laws against it. If ever I find them, depending on how severe their crime, they are thrown into the dungeon or executed. Though I'd rather not do the latter if I can avoid it,' he added. 'Disguising yourself as merchants and traders wishing to conduct business with the orcs might not be a bad idea,' King Valorian smiled with a twinkle in his eye. 'They aren't the cleverest of beings so they can be fooled with ease. However, if your rouse is discovered, you should expect swift retaliation. They do not take kindly to trickery. So please, if you decide to go with this plan, I implore you to be on your guard at all times. Unfortunately, I do not know for certain if the basilisk's attack and the theft of the antidote was part of a larger and more sinister plan. That thought crossed my mind, as well. Perhaps this is all part of a grander scheme to unsurp me and kill the only heir to the throne? A dark thought indeed and one I will investigate thoroughly. Not many beings have set eyes on the orcs' stronghold and lived to tell of it, so the information that I do have cannot be entirely relied upon due to the usual tall tales and exaggeration. However, some things are oft repeated: the stronghold has been constructed on a tall cliff with a view of the sea. It is heavily guarded at all times, especially the trade entrance on the western side of the hold. Many goblins have also been seen in and around the hold as the two races have long since been allies. Humans, too, have been known to travel to the hold on business. It is constructed with a combination of wood and stone. According to reports, even though it looks roughly built and is far from pretty, it is a very sturdy structure. Witnesses have told of its size, though take these accounts with a rather large pinch of salt as the accounts vary greatly. Some say the structure is as large as a small mountain, while others claim it is the size of my palace which, while certainly large, is not as big as a mountain. Rílgari, my trusted sorcerer, estimates that we have, at the very most, 3 weeks until my daughter passes into the void. As I do not know the exact location of the orcan stronghold, I'm afraid that I cannot advise you on the swiftest route to take, but West Spire Road and Wyverling Woods are the quickest paths to get to the mountains. There is a ridge that arcs to the west where the stronghold is said to be. To find it, you must first travel to Kingfisher River and follow it to a lake. There is a bridge that spans the lake so travellers can cross if there are no boats available. After you have crossed the lake, you will come to a fork in the road. Take the lefternmost path and that will lead you to the ridge I mentioned. As for your equipment, again I shall be happy to supply you with whatever you will need. The Spireridge Valley is nown to get bitterly cold at night, so I reccomend fur-linec travelling clothes. There are dangerous predators in those mountains, but they dislike fire so maybe carrying a torch or two will help stave them off? You may have to climb some steep cliffs, so ropes, climbers' picks ((OOC: is that what they're called? Those spike things mountain climbers stick into the rock to help them climb)) should be carried. Of course, you should also have food, though there is game to hunt such as deer and plentiful mountain goats. There are edible plants such as herbs and fungi, too. Though you should be especially careful not to accidentally pick a poisonous one instead. Rílgari shall inform you of which is which.'

The warforged was the last to speak. These automations could be quite affective in battle, so the king was heartened that he had one to assist him in the salvation of his daughter.

'Well met, Legion,' he smiled. 'Yes, as of yet this is the only quest I have, but I shall be sure to enquire your services if another matter arises.' Adressing the group as a whole, he said, 'well, my friends, we have much to do and precious little time in which to accomplish it so let us begin.'

((OOC: Again, if you have any more questions, ask them. Or any preperations you may have to make))

Posted on 2022-07-10 at 10:21:25.
Edited on 2022-07-10 at 10:48:54 by dragon-soul92

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"Very well your highness", the warforged tilted his head to a little bow, "As for my equipment, I would request for as much arrows as your highness can provide me for the purpose of exterminating these non-drows, these orcs. Possibly a fur coat, I am not sure what my unit's limit for operating in low temperature is... Food I do not need, not only is is unneccessary for me but I am also physically incapable of ingesting the things flesh creatures nourish themselves with."

Posted on 2022-07-11 at 08:16:31.

Nomad D2
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Karma: 55/6
3140 Posts

And so it begins

Azax listened to the King's responses to all of the questions.

"Thank you for all of the information.  If any of those rumors and stories you spoke of mentioned the inside of the fortress I would be interested in hearing or reading those as well.  We know so little, that any grain of information, mixed as it may be with the chaff of lies, would be helpful."

Here the Owlin looked around at the others.  "It seems that I have agreed to this quest - and so, perhaps, have these others.  I look forward to meeting your sorceror and getting supplies so that we may begin as quickly as possible."

Gear Azax will want:

A horse - I'm assuming the others will ride so he would also.

A horse to carry gear - one or two for the whole party probably.

Warm clothes sound good.

torches and food.  Basic camping gear.

Mountaineers packs  - for the others make sense, but Azax doesn't need them.

Several animal traps (think bear traps) to put around the camp at night.

Posted on 2022-07-12 at 12:33:25.

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