The City by the Sea

St. Owens: Harmless Abandoned Asylum, or Clever Death Trap

It all started yesterday. No, it goes further back than that; I just haven’t put all of the pieces together yet, but I will. I suppose the most relevant point is that Hector, former leader of the RED Hands (that part’s important) told us about the property he sold off to some politician from the upper crust. I haven’t determined who yet, but the clues are there, I can feel it.

Well, Lamont just marched us all right over there and lo and behold, the door locks behind us. Or did it? He checked the door and claimed it wouldn’t budge knowing very well that WE know he’s the strongest among us and wouldn’t check. If I wasn’t pretending to sleep I’d go check right now but I can’t ruin the illusion. It’s really hard to write sideways, but at least charcoal doesn’t drip. So, we soon encounter Lamont’s plant, Nate Drake, whom I’m now convinced is here to replace me once Lamont figures out how to finish me off. He claims to be a librarian which is definitely a cover story, and all he does is read, which is surely a ploy to catch me off guard.

Then there’s that elf girl in the hall who didn’t count on me seeing in the dark. She might be poisoning the food, but I’m not sure who she works for or with. Everyone, or everyTHING else seems to attack us on sight. Everyone wants me dead but the people I’ve surrounded myself with need my trust before they can betray me! I’ve started walking a few paces behind them as I’m sure that they’re all in this together; Lamont is somehow masterminding this.

I’m not sure what the connection is, but we’ve encountered some strange bug people, blue beasts that travel in packs with zombies, screaming ghosts, and some weird snakes flying in the courtyard.

The blue beast don’t deserve much note aside from being the first real clue into Lamont’s intentions. It was HE who made us approach from the front. I knew an ambush was imminent and, oh! I got surrounded of course but I was too cunning and escaped without much incident.

The ghosts were in some old patient cells. I wish I knew who checked them when we explored the building initially, but they clearly hid these things from me. Conveniently, I was assaulted immediately and blacked out briefly. I woke up before anyone could finish me off, though Lamont was hovering over me, likely about to strike.

The flying snakes are possibly from the strange portal in the SKY (more on this later) and seem to be trapped by the fluctuating nature of that portal since we encountered them during the day when it seems to be closed. I think they were an accident of the whole plan as they seemed most harmful to Lamont.

It was after this that the second bug who escaped the first fight made his presence known, capturing the elf girl (a third agent in all of this mess) and holding her in one of the operating rooms. Lamont insisted we rescue her, perhaps seeking a new ally. They wouldn’t let me question her about the poisoned food, but she told us about the people in yellow robes that would visit the 8 statues in the courtyard on occasion. Lately, lines have begun to glow on the ground, connecting them all together though I don’t recognise the shape.

So, we have RED hands, and YELLOW robes, which makes orange. Orange is the opposite of blue (which I am, by the way) clearly aligning them against me. Furthermore, orange is the opposite of apple. “Apple of my EYE” and there’s a portal in the SKY that looks like an EYE, and SKY is the name of the one Red Hands member that escaped. The robes themselves mean that the wizards are involved, so there’s big magic at play here, and this land was allegedly purchased by some politician from the upper crust.. Wait, the Azure King! Azure is also blue! They’re after the king and I’m to be just some not-so unfortunate casualty! Damn you Lamont, you want the throne for yourself. You tricked me with your “running away from responsibility” story!

If I live through the night, I’ll check the front door on my own and make my escape. Lamont wants to head out to the courtyard tonight under the full moon for what I can only assume is some horrible sacrifice, but I have to play along for now.

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St. Owen's part 2
The rest of the first day in St. Owens reviled a few other oddities and secrets. One of the offices in the basement had a shelf full of undead fetuses which tried to escape there glassy provisions when the party entered the room they were in. Vespa made short work of them striking the shelf with a sheet of lighting. The jars exploded killing the creatures.

And examination room was also found in the basement with an operating theater.

The top floor held most of the housing for the former patrons. A pack of void hounds had taken up residence here was using what people it could find to breed more of their kind. They proved little threat.

With the whole building explored the party picked a room to rest in and tried to sleep through the night. For some in the party this would prove a difficult task as nightmare crept into there sleep leaving some of them fatigued and unable to recover important spells.

In the middle of the night a horrible screaming and banging could be heard from the solitary cells down the hall. The noise persisted until Lamont could take it no more and marched himself to the cell and pulled open its door. Within was found 3 Allpi, broken sprites of the insane which died in these cells. Though their touch caused no physical harm they were able to drain away all of Iryani wisdom leaving her comatose and a little broken inside.

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St. Owen's

With nowhere to go but in, the party resigned themselves to exploring St. Owen’s. Most of the main floor showed the location to be fairly humane. Many of the rooms showed signs of having been abandoned in haste and a layer of dust sat over most of the rooms.

Trapped in one of the sick rooms was a man by the name of Drake. Having come here to look for an entrance to the deep paths he didn’t get far before a structural collapse trapped him in a room. Luckily this was only a day ago so he had suffered little harm other than embarrassment.

There were two things that stood out on the main floor. One was the quality and extent of the library; it seemed to cover a broad array of subject’s and was still well stocked.

The second was the garden statues and the strange creatures that were studying them. The statues made to honour the 7 virtues were arranged evenly around the room and in the centre, an odd eighth statue was newly erected, depicting an unknown figure.

The fight with the alien creatures was quick and brutal, and in the end one of the creatures escaped into the building.

The next area to be searched was the basement and in doing so they seem to have picked up a shadow. Someone is watching them, moving in the dark watching them but never getting too close. Other mysteries that have arisen in this space are the hole that seems to never end and the testing rooms for the poor souls that have been used as living experiments.

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The Beginning of the End

It didn’t take long for the party to get back to town and recover from their wounds. A couple days’ rest and a visit to the Cult of the Empire and the party was back in action. This time taking a more direct rout to Hectors, the party managed to make it into the estate with no issues. Hector was waiting. Well, he was eating but he knew this was coming. After a little chat and the party learning about the sale of St. Owen’s, a home for the mad, in Red Hands’ turf.

Hector decided that he liked his house enough to press his luck against the party. As fists and blades clashed in the dining area, Sky burst out onto the balcony and soon the area was full of lighting and flame as well. There were screams and curses, death and faked death, acid and… pretty sparkle lights. The battle was long and hard fought. At one point having died once and been resurrected, Hector tried to surrender but the anger of a months-long war with the Red Hands and the death of a close friend left little compassion in the groups hearts and Hector was put to the sword. Sky, seeing that victory was not in her grasp fled vowing to continue the circle of vengeance. What few guards remained surrendered and were granted survival.

The next two days were taken with resting and exploring the home and Island. Though well built, Hector did not have much care for decor beyond a few personal luxuries. The building is large and the island still mostly wild. Only time will see what can be done with it. To date no one has found Hector’s personal stash.

With the problems of the Red Hand behind them and no other pressing matters, the party decided to take a look at St. Owen’s to see why someone would want the old building. Upon passing into the antechamber the door firmly shut behind them with an ominous boom. The lock seeming to be of a mystic nature the doors did not care who tried to open them. The now stale air of St. Owen’s seems oddly still for a place that was once filled with screams and manic laughter. With no way out, it seems there is little to do but move forward into St.Owen’s.

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The Worst Fucking Day Ev... I'm Invisible, Aren't I?
Iryani's late journal entry

Alright, it wore off? Anyway, Uncle Allan gave us the go-ahead on smashing in Redman’s summer home. I forget his name now, but Cole’s boss; that ass couldn’t have talked more if he had 8 faces. Right, so Uncle Allan said he had a friend from abroad who could sell us some magical stuff and he got us a discount! Not only is magical stuff harder to find than a clean rag on Vildeis… Discount!

Long story short, we got some scrolls, potions, a bead that turns into a campfire… I’ve been camping a lot lately it seems. Lamont got some cute slippers but I don’t expect to ever see them again. It’s funny because they’re lavender and he likely doesn’t even know that’s a colour. I think Milah got a ring to keep herself safe and Vesper has a new wand to add to her spoiled-Empire-brat collection. Or whatever they call themselves.

So far so good. So we get to the coast down south, see where the Red Hands are taking boats back and forth to their summer home. So, we’re waiting for night and Lamont manages to stumble into an old sailor’s hideaway. Sorry, I mean fall. He found a hole in the ground and fell into it, but he found a sailor’s cache so kaching! I thought. Boy was I wrong.

Well, Nim, sea and sky god of the Empire used to be 5 people and a boat. Maybe the boat’s in there, the Empire’s weird. Yeah, this was a cache left by them. There was this really strange and magical room with an animated painting of a ship on the ocean, and a crystal that projected the constellations in the region. This region. The door through was blocked by a puzzle tied to a list of names, and we had to pick out the names of the five people who became Nim. So, ‘no’ to the boat being in there.

Well, we don’t know Empire gods so the room said something about learning the hard way, and then there were elementals and I think one was a ghost, but don’t tell the other elementals. So, good news, I learned how to use my brooch of vanishing, the bad news is that I can’t say ‘fuck’ whenever I want to anymore. Oh, and that ghost sapped so much strength from me that I can barely walk. Anyway, we were scattered across the room but gradually mashed our way through the elemental squad and went back to guessing names on the wall. The room changed the rules and threw an invisible pixie thing at us. This asshole, well, I cast a spell to see invisible stuff so he blinded me. FOREVER!

I threw my scroll of Glitterdust onto the ground for Vesper to cast, I guess she did because I don’t think I have it anymore, and they killed that little pixie shit head and Lamont got a sword… I guess. Today can fucking eat me.

~ Transcribed by Sally of ’Sally’s Scribes and Scripts’

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Back in the family and a night of revenge
One Ship two ship, red ship, long ship

With the grappling hooks in place and the ships bound together, the gang planks dropped and arrows flew. Justacar deupitys rushed the Wakecaster while the Justacar in command hung back and inspired his troops. The battle was hard fought but in the end victorious.

Kalin, not wanting to be confused with a nice guy took this moment to kick everyone not part of his crew off the ship. Luckley there was an extra ship to stand on. It took over a day to get they ship into a harbor because of the lack of crew but it made it there. With a little travel and some negotiations the ship was sold and a tidy profit made. Iryani took her share of the profits and put them into a new ship being built for her.

A couple of nights after this while relaxing at the catapult inn. Captain Richards decided he would make good on his promise and bough the watch done on them all. The Inn was set on fire and exits blocked. forcing the party to fle through the only exit left Into the waiting arrows of the watch. The fight ended when Captain Richards saw that victory was not at hand (because all he could see was acid) and withdrew. Though victorious, The Catapult Inn was Destroyed.

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Row row row your boat

Having had a few days to rest the party made ready to talk with Kalin. He had devised a plan to get into the Justacars compound and liberate their ship. Kalin and some old members of the crew would cause a commotion at one end of the compound while the party snuck in through an old waterway that ran beyond the walls of the compound. They would meet at the ship and escape from there.

The path through the waterway was short but not without peril. The party was accosted by a Gibbering Mouther which seemed like it might be a challenge until Iryani crippled it with a colour spray.

After exiting the waterway and spending a short time searching the compound they discovered the newly painted Wakecaster. While approching the ship the party activated two clockwork guards which were a bit of a challenge. During the fight they even made Lemont take a bath.

After gaining control of the ship the party repelled an attack by a troop of Justacars sent to investagate the commotion caused by the clockwork guards. It was not long before these people were bested, the party was reunited with Kalin and they were on their way.

But it’s never that easy. The Justacars, having spent a large sum restoring and installing an experimental weapon on the ship were quick to give chase. Slowly gaining on the Wakecaster, the Justacards rained shots onto the ship trying to slow it down. The party spent this time trying to figure out the strange runes and magic circles used to power the Arc Canon. Once the controls were understood the ship was turned and a shot fired. Still 600 feet from the Justacards ship, the canon withered wood and killed crew in a crackeling 10 foot line.

Closing fast the ships are now locking into place , the Arc Canon is charged and blood will once more flow over the Wakecasters deck.

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A time to rest and reflect

With the hunt for Kol over The party brought The information they learned to Uncle Allen. They had learned that Hector has a small home on a island 2 miles up the south coast from the city wall. Also that Hector’s left had was a women by the name of Sky. It seems she found and Imperial Spell book and seems to think she is a wizard because of it and often is found with Hector. During this conversation Vesper boldly informed everyone that she bore the Mark of Cain, A strange curse that seems to have no cure. At this Uncle Allen dismissed the rest of the party and had a private chat with Vesper.

With a few days to them self the party went their own ways for short time. Milah began training to improve her endurance, Iryani visited her departed friend on the island of Dust and Ash, Vesper learned a little about the Lower City and Lamont fell into a bottle.
On one of these days while the party gathered for brunch, they witnessed the Justacars arresting a large number of Crazy people that seems to have gathered on Allen street. The party was informed that they would most likes be sold off to the silver sands for work in the mines.
On one of these days while asking around the docks about ship prices, Iryani’s Brother found her. It was a awkward and warmish reunion. Kalin was quick to enlist the help of the Iryani to free their mothers ship from the Justices.

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The Barrow

Concerned that not following Kol into the Barrows would result in never being able to find him again the party bravely ( for the most part ) moved in to the wreckage that made by the night of golden skies. The Blood trail being left by Kol came to a quick end where evidence of healing potions were used as well as a short note asking the party to “Fak aff”

The trail at this point became harder to follow but Reginald was able to sniff him out and keep pace. This unfortunately resulted in the party moving into a wave a week undead moving through the streets. these skeleton were also being followed by a much larger creature that seemed to be using the skeletons to build up its body. The party attacked this creature only to find that it was fiercer then though and not worth the efforts to destroy. they fled the area in hopes to find Kol’s trail again.

After a some hours of looking Kol’s train was found and followed into a small chapel. when moving from the main hall in an anti-chamber Kol triggered a trap causing a small collapse separating the party. Kol Attack Widget and Reginald while they were split from the rest of the party. It was a drawn out and brutal fight which ended in Widgets defeat. The Gnome was Slain and left for the party to find as warning. Kol fled the area to lick his wounds and plan for the next confrontation.

Having received Widget body the party came across some strange crows wearing masks, one leather and one porcine. The party tried to speak with them bit found language to be an issue. Unable to understand the party but still curious as to their requests the crows used a soothing song to control the party and make them walk to where Priest from the Island of Dust and Ash were gathered with a number of Psychopomps. These Catrinas were able to communicant telepathically with the party. Though unable to Widget they offered to take his body back to the island so that it could be put to a proper rest.
The party once again started after Kol. Having lost Kol and the parties best tracker (Reginald) finding the trail proved more difficult than before. While moving through a set of ruins they came across what seemed to be a hiding place for someone. There was a bed and fire pit along with a few meager items. Among the items was a pendent that has once belonged to Milah’s mother. She took it, confused as to how it came to be in this place and what its existence might mean.
After this the party found Kol’s trail and followed him into an old bath house. Kol, not keen on fighting the whole party, woke up a Fleshy, blood hunger blob that had grown in the center pool. With each hit the creature grew greater in size and risked overwhelming the party but in the end the damage they could do outpaced its growth and the creature died.

Kol was proving to be a huge pain in everyone side by this point as they started to hunt him once again. After some time the group came upon a strange seen. A human man, probable in his mid 40’s was sitting at a ruines café chatting with someone ( something?) just out of sight in the shadows. A Women, Obviously an Imperial Magus watching over them. After brief exchange they realized that this was the same Man they has fenced a item too with the aid of the walker brothers several weeks ago. He was now properly Introduced as Meradoth Von Rushak. This being the 3rd time this group has crossed Rushak’s path he decided there might be more to this then chance and offered them the help of his aid Vesper Destern, in their hunt for Kol.
Kol was finally tracked into an old church and trapped in the back of it. Determined to make a final stand he engaged the party. His first at was to disable Milah then move in to attack Lamont. It was around this time that two of the churches Side doors burst in and an gang of ghouls and huecuva attacked.
Kol was quick to offer up a short truce to deal with the undead and with little disagreement from the party, he declared it a done deal. Though Kol was good to his word and fought the creatures until they were all vanquished he did take that opportunity to maneuver himself to and exit so that when the last of the undead dropped he was able to get out.
This didn’t keep the party from continuing the hunt. This time though the tracking was hard nothing came between them and there quarry. The found Kol in an old courthouse, tired but ready for them. Kol lured the party forward which wasn’t hard as Lamont was “Done with this shit” and charged. Milah moved into back up Lamont. Kol, with a smile and coy remark, “ Do you know what the best traps are ? The ones that include yourself” and triggered a explosion on the ceiling and caused a collapse. Milah and Kol were quick enough to escape the debris but Lamont was buried in it. From there things progressed poorly for Kol and he was swiftly defeated.
When Kol woke up he found himself tied to a chair and the last rays of daylight slipping out of the sky. He tried to trick the party into thinking he has escaped with a brooch of Vanishing but it proved less then effective. The party finally got the information from him and disruption turned to what to do with him. A question that Lamont was quick to answer. He declared Kol a murdered and a crook with a soul and black as the coming night. An true example of all that ate away at the cities underbelly. With that, he landed his axe deep in Kols body. After a quiet moment, Lamont declared that he had no guilt with this action and he kicked the body off of his weapon, turned and marched out of the building.

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Into the barrows
I see undead people

With little option but to hunt down Kol among the ruins of the barrows, the party mustared it’s self and moved in.

At first the blood trail was easy to follow but it wasn’t long before Kol took a moment to heal himself and leave a short note to the party. (“FAK AFF”). From here the trail became harder to follow but thanks to Reginald, the death crab, the party was able to stay on the trail.

The

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