Vampires of Grabford

Session One of GRNC 2 – The Retaking of Grabford

A GREAT NORTHERN CRUSADE ADVENTURE from Greyhawkstories.com

(Campaign Notes and Adaptation by Thomas Kelly)

Scene One: Search for Dina

Sir Harassin wakes from a troubled dream in which he saw two lovely women vying for his attention. It’s daylight, midmorning before noon, but the sun shines pale through the accursed never-ending creeping fogs that rise and fall all around the city walls. The siege is underway. The shouts of soldiers, the cries of the wounded, and the battering of the ram against the unyielding Morsten Gate fills his ears. The battle goes well by day, despite the weird shadows and creeping fogs, but by night, terrors from inside the city come out to stalk the men in the camps. Mournful wails of ghosts and specters haunt the night. Not one of the men dares sleep so long as the sun is down.

Harassin tries to remember the details of the previous night, drinking with the raftmen of the Lucky Prince. Captain Paddy Lash and his crew have been making some extra coin by running supplies up the canal for the army while waiting for their promised reward. Ordinarily they don’t stay the night near the cursed city. But their Vetha wisewoman failed to return yesterday. Harassin waited with Paddy Lash and Danni, spending the night on the barge. They shared the last of their Pomarj Black. That’s the last thing Harassin remembers.

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Company of the Silver Wolf

Jared “CruelSummerLord” Milne

“The Crown’s a sacred artifact to the gnomish gods, one that Kalrek could use to become the king of my homeland of Flinthold,” Airk said. “We defeated Kalrek and his minions, and then we learned that the Crown was in the Great Kingdom of Aerdy’s South Province. We traveled there to retrieve it and were caught in a plot to destroy the Iron League. We thwarted that plot and retrieved the Crown, but by then it was nearly the end of autumn. We need to sail to the Principality of Ulek to return to Flinthold, but we won’t find a ship traveling at this time of year. We’ll be staying until after Needfest and then we’ll take a ship to Ulek in Fireseek.”

“May we see it?” the first young man asked.

“What, the Crown?” Airk asked in surprise.

“It’s just a request,” the young man said. “We only want to look at it-we don’t have much use for mineral wealth.”

At first Airk wanted to refuse, but he realized the truth in what they were saying. Reaching into his pack, he pulled out an object and unwrapped the cloth covering it, revealing it to be the Crown of Arumdina.

The Crown was a masterpiece of gnomish craft. It had a beautifully tailored cap of pure sable fur, a golden circlet ringed with rubies and platinum arches each lined with two rows of diamonds. The spaces between the Crown’s half-arches were filled in turn with the images of a raccoon, a sable, a badger and a mole, each wrought in gold and bearing bright emeralds for eyes. The Crown’s monde was of platinum like the arches, topped by a piece of mithril crafted to resemble a battleaxe.

Despite his reservations, Airk smiled at the Raballah youths’ admiration of the Crown’s beauty.

“How does the Crown get its name?” one of the young men asked, looking from the Crown to Airk and then back again. “You said your kingdom is called Flinthold, didn’t you?”

“Arumdina is the name of the battleaxe wielded by Garl Glittergold, greatest of the gnomish gods,” Airk said, beaming proudly. “That mithril axe is said to be a piece of Arumdina, giving a powerful magical blessing to the gnomish king who wears it, and the kingdom he rules.”


The Silver Wolf trilogy is now four complete books. Which means it’s not a trilogy any longer.

The Company of the Silver Wolf originally developed online at Canonfire! as Jared “CruelSummerLord” Milne chronicled the adventures and developed the stories of his campaigns across the Flanaess. With the addition of his latest installment, For the Honor of the Crown, Milne brings the tale to its epic conclusion. Read the new installment, or start at the beginning. You can read all four books in the Silver Wolf series here.

Summer’s Passing

THE LIBERATION OF GEOFF

Summer’s Passing (Campaign Notes-SPOILERS by Lyle C Brown)

Based on Living Greyhawk module GEO2-06 by Eric Menge and Diane Hazlett

An IC report to the Midnight Ravens by Hodkin Surefoot:

While recuperating from our most recent adventure, my companion Foruk and I were “requested” to assist the Druids’ Circle with a dilemma. It seems the Circle was in need of a new Archdruid. Apparently they had selected Gwenllian, sister to our dear Brennin, for this position. There was just one problem, Gwenllian was in the Fey Lands as a personal “long term” er … ”guest” of the Seelie Fey King. As such, she was at the least unaware of her new destiny. Additionally, while she may decide she would like to embark on this new career, it seemed highly unlikely that her host would allow her to leave.

This is where Foruk and I come in. Along with four other intrepid adventurers, the Circle solicited our assistance in retrieving Gwenllian from the lands of Faerie.

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The Invasion of Geoff

Here’s a new Greyhawk video dramatizing the giants’ attack on Geoff at the end of the Greyhawk Wars.

An overwhelming army of giants, giant-kin, and their evil followers stampedes into the Grand Duchy of Geoff, overrunning the land in late CY 583. Mayloriel, the grey elf consort of the ranger lord Darlon Lea, learns of the invasion only days before the giants enter the county of Ffrwythlon Dol. She organized the people of her county and led them south across the river to Oytmeet and later to Gorna where she and Darlon Lea led their warriors to assist in the defense of the city and the escape of the population. Thanks to Mayloriel’s early warning, many lives were spared.


Visit the Geoff page for more adventure from the Liberation of Geoff.

Caves of Twilight Resplendent

THE LIBERATION OF GEOFF

The Gifts of the Fey part 2: The Caves of Twilight Resplendent 
(Campaign Notes and Adaptation by Thomas Kelly)
Based on Living Greyhawk module GEO1-03b, by Eric Menge and Sholom West.
Beware total spoilers. Read part one here.

“Wake up, mortal!” Cold water sprinkles Bryn’s face, forcing her to wakefulness. A strange-sounding voice urges her in cross and impatient, gargling tones, “Enough with your slumbering! The queen expects you, and you will be a sorry to keep her waiting!” Bryn opens her eyes to behold a scowling sea-green faerie crouched over her. His webbed hands flick more water into her face. He motions toward a nearby bench on which her clothes are laid out. “Get dressed. Lilly Petal and Cottonseed have brought watered wine and bread to break your fast. Your companions are already up and dressed.”

Bryn shakes her groggy head and tries to remember the details of the previous evening. It’s all a blur—the ballroom, the costumes, the fey, the music, the stars. Was I drinking wine? I can’t remember! Nothing for it now. She slides out from under soft blankets and dresses herself. The green-skinned faerie impatiently bids her eat, and she obliges him with a few bites. The door opens and Ansgar, Boots, and Gundoriel enter the room. “Good! You are all ready,” the faerie observes. “The queen’s grace is in her court. Don’t make her wait!” With no further ado, the nixie turns and paddles off down the hallway, his webbed feet leaving small puddles of water with every footstep.

“Wait, if you please! Where is the queen’s court?” Bryn inquires.

The nixie turns back and offers a condescending smile. “Precisely where it needs to be.”

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One Good Turn

THE LIBERATION OF GEOFF

One Good Turn (Campaign Notes-SPOILERS by Lyle C Brown)

Based on Living Greyhawk module GEO2-05a-b, by Don Lawson

Summer 592 CY

A Report to The Midnight Ravens

Knave Hodkin Surefoot was contacted by a servant of High Seneschal Cuthalion regarding an important mission in service to the Brennin (the Grand Duke). It seems the Brennin was seeking an allegiance with the Elves of the Oytwood, but they required a service be performed for the Weeping Council before such alliance would be considered. Along with my friend and companion the half-orc Foruk the Silent, and two other adventurers, we were sent before the Weeping Council to receive our assignment. The council requested the we venture into Gorna itself, seeking the Tear of Corellon, a very powerful elvish artifact which was lost during the Giant invasion. The council had ascertained that the Tear was being kept in one of the fire giants’ temples, in the center of Gorna.

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Gifts of the Fey

THE LIBERATION OF GEOFF

The Gifts of the Fey: The Fey Woods (Campaign Notes-SPOILERS by Thomas Kelly)

Based on Living Greyhawk module GEO1-03a, by Eric Menge and Sholom West

The Army of the Liberation needs rangers to escort some certain Geoff-folk from Hochoch to an olven village tucked away well within the Dim Forest. Ansgar, Bryn, and Boots volunteer for the assignment. They are eager to escape Hochoch for most any reason. A long, hungry winter and the dismal circumstances under which the refugees live have deflated their spirits. An adventure into that dark forest under the promise of spring seems like the cure. Gundoriel, their Grey Elf companion and priest of Correlon Larethian, expresses his reluctance to accompany them on account of rising tensions between the Woods of the Dim Forest and the Greys of Oytwood. Bryn plies him persuasively, “Who will look after us without you?”

The Negligent Nanny

The rangers complete their mission under the ever-night of those shadowed boughs and turn back toward Hochoch. A breath of spring warms the chill from their bones. The heavy crowned trees that give the Dim Forest its name allow little light to penetrate, but in patches, here and there as the trees thin near the edge, warm shafts of sunlight spill through, gladdening the heart. The snows have melted, the rains abated, and the song of birds, returning from southern lands, celebrates the warmer weather. Then comes another sound on the morning air—the sobs of a woman’s inconsolable weeping. Bryn’s vicious war dog, Fang, bounds ahead, and the party follows. They come across a peasant woman seated on the ground at the base of an old ipp tree, her arms wrapped about her knees, her face streaked with tears. Fang nuzzles her gently and whines sympathetically, startling the woman. She shrieks, leaps to her feet, stumbles back from the dog and looks wildly about, surprised to see the three rangers and a Grey Elf regarding her. Ansgar speaks first, “Soft now woman! Put away your tears. What misfortune makes you weep so piteously?”

The young woman, a girl called Alys, explains, “A nanny I am to a young lad called Dyvan. I fell asleep beneath this ipp, under some enchantment I reckon, and the boy wandered off and crossed the Laughing Brook where I dare not go.”

“Fortune is with you. We are hunters and trackers,” Ansgar boasts. “We’ll find your missing lad and return him to you quick enough.” These words console Alys, and she describes the boy, a six-year-old no taller than a halfling, head of curly dark brown hair, green of eyes. Bryn translates all this for Dunglorin who does not speak the common tongue of the Flanfolk.

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Grabford Falls

Introduction to GRNC 2 – The Retaking of Grabford

A GREAT NORTHERN CRUSADE ADVENTURE from Greyhawkstories.com

Thomas Kelly

The Great Northern Crusade advances! Several months ago, Furyondian and Velunese forces, under the command of Grand Marshal Jemian, crossed the flare line and slammed into the armies of Old One. Fighting under the blessing of Heironeous and assisted by high-caliber magic from powerful mages such as Bigby, the vengeful crusaders made quick initial progress.

By Needfest (CY 586), cold weather, freezing rains, and deep snows hampered the army’s advance, but with Atroa’s warming smile and the promise of warmer weather, the campaign resumes in the spring. The Knights of the Hart have already taken control of the Bone Road west of Grabford and reached the Veng, driving a wedge between the occupied Furyondian cities of Grabford and Crockport. While the Furyondian navy sails out of Morsten to take control of Grabford harbor, the Lady Katarina Walworth and Count Artur Jakartai command the crusaders of the Holy Shielding to lay siege to the fallen capital of Crystalreach County.

The walls of Grabford and the battlements of the city’s forty towers hug the banks of the great Veng River where the the water widens into shallows impassable by large craft and heavy laden ships. Those heavier vessels must enter Grabford’s harbor and make their way through a marvelously engineered canal that snakes through the city before it passes out through the southern wall. Beyond the walls of the city, the canal rejoins the Veng half a mile downstream. Within Grabford, three impressive drawbridges span the canal, allowing even proud-masted sailing ships to pass through its city. The proud citizens of Grabford once enjoyed the sight of the river’s great sailing vessels and laden barges gliding gracefully past their streets, and they profited no small amount from their passage. King Belvor built strong city walls and forty towers, and he garrisoned a thousand of Furyondy’s finest soldiers to guard the strategically significant fords and protect the canal. For all these reasons, Grabford numbered among the proudest cities of the Kingdom, a necessary port of call for every trading vessel that sailed from Lake Whyestil to the Nyr Dyv.

Then came war. (CY 583)

The armies of the Old One descended into Furyondy, laid siege to Chendl, and conquered Crockport. The Furyondian Navy and all the merchant and cargo ships of Lake Whyestil fled the fall of the harbor town (Crockport). Abyssal bats and winged fiends pursued the mariners across the great lake like raging storms, driving ships upon the rocks or spilling them into the lake. Buffeted, burnt, and torn, only a few surviving vessels escaped down the Veng and passed through the canal at Grabford in disgrace. The good folk of the city watched with no small dimay as the tattered navy of Furyondy, and all those noblemen’s trading vessels too, passed through their city in haste. None dared stop at the docks or tarry long enough to drop anchor in the harbor.

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A Taste of the Lethe

The Hateful Wars: Chapter Forty-Eight

Thomas Kelly

“I beg you to accompany me on one last embassy to Enstad. The Fey Queen is to be honored for her victories. The Grand Court intends to invest her with the Mantle of the Blue Moon, raising her to the title ‘Lady Rhalta of All Elvenkind.’”

Bagbag snorted. “What did she do? Mope about on her faerie-flower throne while you did all the work. They should name you their queen.”

“Will you accompany me?” Kristryd ignored the old wizard’s bluster.

“We have come to a changing of the guard,” Bagbag mused philosophically. “One feels it. The wars are at an end. Kristryd is made queen over the mountains, her sons over Gilmorack and Dengar. Urgush is no more. Hroth is no more. Gilvgola and Furduch have fallen. In Tringlee, the Duke Gallowagn passes the Shining Crown of Lothromenoron to his son and takes his leave. In Keoland, Senestal II ascends to the Throne of the Lion. All things change, but not in Enstad. In Enstad, they heap more honors upon do-nothing Yolande.”

“‘Yes’ or ‘no,’ old dwarf,” Kristryd pressed. “Will you walk with me to Enstad this summer?”

“I am ever at your service, your majesty,” Bagbag said with a bow. “But why should the Queen of the Lortmil Mountains walk? You should be carried upon the wind or teleported by means of dweomer.”

“I prefer to forget my sorrows with a long walk, and I desire your company,” the queen said. “Just the two of us. We’ll leave Bamadar to look after affairs.”

The Way to Enstad

Bagbag agreed. He leaned heavily upon his sorcerous staff each limping step of the way. His old bones had refused to properly knit back together, even under the healing power of the Sacred Heart. But the trueheaded loremaster felt glad enough to enjoy the journey through the mountains with her once again. They went by way of the Celene Pass to Anyanes, just the two of them together, with no escorting guard or afterlings. In reward for all their labors to purge the mountains, they walked without fear of ambush. As they travelled, they reminisced over all that had befallen them and all they had endured during twelve years of war.

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The Chronicler’s Final Tale 

By Carlos A.S. Lising

Edited by Thomas Kelly

They started to arrive at sunrise. One by one, each appeared in their own way. The first to arrive came as glittering sunlight and a cloud of glissando moonbeams, realizing themselves into shapes and forms as they pleased. The next, seven in number, strode forth from the verdant density of the timbers, offering nods of salutation and respect to those that arrived before them. In turn, they greeted five, rising from the ocean’s cresting waves. Four more, hailed later, brought forth on world’s winds. They all assembled before the great pavilion. Each one older than time itself, yet, none of those ancient ones could say who was responsible for the colonnade that stood at the foot of the mountain with it’s everlasting pillars of pristine white marble, run through by veins of silver and gold. Certainly the next seven, clambering from deep burrows and bearing gifts of baked goods and fresh cheeses, did not know. Neither did the thirteen from the west, pale skinned, proud, and imperious. And for all their profane knowledge, not even those knew who came riding upon dark pock-marked steeds or vile clouds of darkness, accompanied by the chittering laughter of the mad or the sighs of the damned. Still they came, one by one, gathering before the pavilion. Some stood beside mortal enemies or next to long-estranged kin—this one beside that one, even those antithetical one to the other as fire to ice, light to dark. None raised a weapon; none raised a voice. They came because each knew they must. They came to offer a first and a last word, each the same: respect.   

***

His conscious awareness surfaced as if from deep, dark waters, like one arising from non-existence, like one waking from a sound sleep, the way one sloughs off the soporific haze of a dreamless slumbering. Past the gossamer veil came the normal sense of confusion. Where am I? Why do I feel so cold? What time is it? 

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