Tuesday, April 5, 2016

(Hackmaster) Burning Trogs Rule! #33 - The Long Road Back Home

After getting the backsides handed to them by a girl and her demon, and the subsequent race through Barthey exhausting the steeds, the Trogs thought it best to take a few weeks off the heal naturally and relax, before setting off for Marakeikos and home.

1st of DuoDec 1135, Barthey City
Zorin finally felt better and decided to train in the city

The gnome titans (Zorin and Janus) venture to a Temple of Pangrus and got loads of info.  While they were gone...
  • Emron conquered Ispatlia, pissing most of the world's rulers off.  The King of Mercadia, the mad dwarf, executed all the Emron diplomats.  The Principalities that make up Emron were expanded from six to thirteen (including one ruled by a kobold sorcerer!)
  • Lots of revolts popping up around Ispatlia.
  • Senzar is controlled by two or three different factions fighting the rightful ruler, Kannex, the former Red Mage of Anon-Maxis.
  • No expeditions to the rumored "Hollow World" have returned
  • Marakeikos, Stronghome, and the Gnomish City-States have formed a mutual defense league.  
  • Marakeikos is enveloped in a religious civil war between the old Church of Traldar and the new, godless Church of Marakeikos.  Lots of fighting around Celsior and Mirros.
  • Marakeikos continue to push Ahk-Tang and the Central Orc League further into the Milosic badlands.  Combined force of human, gnome titan, and elves under the command of Baron Sherlane of Califon's daughter, Arlene.  Unable to help squelch the civil war.
  • By the end of OctDec 1134, Lady Arlene and her army had secured everything as far west as Fort Dzeebagd
  • King Valens of Marakeikos was forced to flee the capital under the protection of Baron Desmond in Celsior.  
  • Baron Desmond takes the Order of the Griffon and the Elvenguard and crushes any resistance in Mirros.  
  • Church of Traldar is crushed and most of its adherents join the Cult of Apotheosis to prevent persecution.  
  • Even after the revolt. King Valens was appointing dead guys and revolt leaders to positions within the government, with no rhyme nor reason.
  • Over Yule, King Valens was kidnapped!  The Seneschal, Alexis Corrigan, was now running things.  The King's sister Adrianna will become Queen if he's not found.
  • Barthey's Lord Alchemists have created an acid golem.
  • Major fighting between the dwarves, drow, and Ras-Prythax in Ras-Prythax.
  • Stronghome invaded Vlachia and kidnapped the king to try him on warcrimes against halflingness.  
24th of DuoDec 1135, Barthey City
Training completed, the Trogs were filled in on more world events:
  • King Ludwig von Hendricks of Vlachia escaped halfling custody in Stronghome and is on the loose.  Vlachian capital moved from the poorly name "Fort Doom" to Shelley Harbor (Amatay to the eastern natives of the Mer Kasp.
  • The dwarven clans of Skyforge had a schism as well, which was ended by the appearance of the legendary Dwarf Golem.  However, the "Mad Dwarf" of Mercadia appeared, kills the Golem single-handedly, and name Boffin Everast king.  Skirmishes still ongoing.
25th of DuoDec 1135, Barthey City
They got a direct boat ride to Mirros.

28th of DuoDec 1135, Mirros, Kingdom of Marakeikos
As they arrived at the port, things looked even worse than from the reports..  Many parts of the city wret out and the stench of death still hangs over the town.

All of the banners and pennants that usually adorn the city have been removed/destroyed.  

There is a heavy presence of Akana priests.  We head off to Debbie's Singing Mighty Keg.  We get a room and current events,straight from the source.
  • The Religion of Traldar has been outlawed in Mirros and Celsior.  
  • No one truly won the Civil War.  Corruption in the Church of Marakeikos, complete with the disappearance of the King, has resulted in its dissolution.  The Akana priests have stepped in to fulfill the needs of the flock (the tenants of each religion were almost identical, save the part where the Church of Marakeikos prayed to no direct gods.  
  • Baron Desmond Celsior has kept the peace in his barony by iron military might.  
  • As a positive.  Frandor's Keep... now Fort Titanicus, has been repaired enough to launch its operations again.  
  • The Krakatos School of Magic is opening soon.
29th of DuoDec 1135, Mirros
The Trogs hastily left for Celsior.

30th of DuoDec, 1135
The warm weather this time of year, mixed with a slow drizzle turning into a steady rain, and everything was very muddy.

31st of DuoDec, 1135
As they passed through small hamlets and farms, it was muddy as hell, and desolate in terms of people and/or  wild life, or even domesticated animals around the farms.

33rd of DuoDec, 1135
Rain finally relented.  The mud did not.
35th of DuoDec 1135, Outside of Celsior.
At a ramshackle shack with a bunch of heavily guys in white cloaks stop the party.  

They refused entrance into Celsior unless they could recite an Akana prayer.  They manage to all pull it off except for Terval , who decided to "leave," turned invisible, and caught up with them later.  The rest still needed  to be "purified" due to our time with the unbelievers.  

Everyone went down to the river for the ceremony.  The Akana baptisms (not really a thing theologically) are a success, except for Zorin, who mumbles something about killing infidels.    The fellows in cloaks try to trip him up by reciting a responsive Pangrus prayer, but Zorin just looked at them, confused.

An old priest starts talking about Zorin's lack of faith, but he ended up spinning a yarn about being raised Akana but not being devout enough during his youth. They buy the party's piety and let them go.
1st of TriDec, 1135, Celsior!
Celsior is finally reached.  It was in much better shape than Mirros.  The gate guards weren't regular watchmen, they're Order of the Griffon!  

Evidently, Baron Desmond and the Order have slew many patriarchs on both sides of the civil war.

We go to Cecelia's house.  The house still looked abandoned, but Mutumbo's family was there. Mutumbo had become a lush with a cheap ale gut.  

Celsior was a little low on luxuries.  Apparently the Akana zealots they encountered were banned by the Baron and shouldn't even be alongside the road.  Baron Desmond, Mutumbo explained, welcomes everyone, so long as they aren't causing trouble.  

The city as a whole recovered nicely from the fighting.

4th of TriDec 1135, Celsior
The mood of the town was much better than Mirros.  Mutumbo goes into training to get into shape. Whitey babysat Takem, and Coreena finally got time off to be a little girl.  Another year of taxes on the house were paid, and a report made about the zealot checkpoint.  

5th of TriDec 1135, Celsior.
Gwen:  Zorin wants to go check out the post board to see what's new and exciting.  Most of the postings have to do with churches.  Zorin get Terval to help him decipher what everything is saying.  Terval finds one of interest:

"Lady of Means requires assistance of adventurers for a mission of utmost importance.  Secrecy required.  Lady Elana Zadrian at the Iron Keg Inn."

After months on the road, the the Desert Nomad story arc, it was finally time to come home.    The stability of the old world was being attacked from all directions,  so it was nice to see Cecelia's home/Trog HQ was still in one piece, even if Cecelia was still missing in action.    The good news was that with the taxes paid, and no signs of chaos brewing, Mutumbo was ready to leave his wife and child and jump back into the adventuring saddle.

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