Domus Vale

Session 4

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Domus Vale is a town suffering from escalating goblin raids. Local goblin king Skeek Bonecrown is stealing supplies from the town for some nefarious end. The goblins have stolen a three-mast galleon from a mercenary group called the Diamond Dogs that was approaching the village.

A group of vampire hunters have gone off-book and have blown up the local tavern to try and kill the party, whom they see as a barrier to their task. Several prominent citizens were killed or injured in the blast. They have kidnapped their target, a half-vampire called Rylan Toben and are holding him in the lighthouse, using a Stone of Hades to magically fortify the building.

To access the lighthouse the party need to find the other stone of Hades, in the ancient manorhouse of Geronimo Hades himself, deep within the Mere of Dead men, a supernatural swamp that lies beyond the shieldwall. The heroic Red Wardens of Domus Vale have already set out to find the stone, but haven’t returned. The party need to find them and rescue/recruit them.

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Tsume, the ranger, leads the party through the swamp. Mr Chips scouts the location from the air. They locate a missing Domus Vale child, who was turned to stone by cockatrice. The party travel through swamps and hilltops, locating a house. Within the house is a giant spider. Maranwe torches the house, burning up all the webbing and spider eggs. The party engage and defeat the giant spider, Ragana transforming into a giant spider herself to duel the beast. In the spider’s web the party find the corpse of one of the Red Wardens.

Goblin tracks seem to lead in and out of the swamp, and the party soon find that Skeek Bonecrown and his goblins are using the sunken Hades Manor as their base. The galleon that the goblins stole is moored next to the manor.

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The party descend into the swampy depths of the manor through a chimney. They need to find Geronimo Hades and the rest of the Red Wardens. Vosk stealth-kills a goblin watchman. Ragana becomes a tiny spider and scopes out the entire ground floor, scuttling beneath doors. She finds another goblin and takes him out. The party locate Brannigan the Bold, Red Warden leader, dead in the chapel.

In the Manor workshop the party find Burt Ficklefingers, a famous tinkerer and artificer, enslaved by Clan Bonecrown to build a device that would channel the life energy from a mage and use it to power the ship they stole. The unfortunate mage in question is Kelp the dragonborn, a Red Warden sorcerer. The goblins here are up to no good, attempting to amass vehicles and weapons to allow them to defeat other goblin clans.

Opening a secret cellar door, Tsume shapeshifts into a suspiciously short Bugbear as a disguise and heads down. He finds the desiccated corpse of a long-dead Geronimo Hades enthroned in the cellar. Before him he sees the goblin king Skeek Bonecrown, wearing the Stone of Hades like jewellery and personally executing Vasily, another Red Warden. Gristle, Skeek’s bugbear bodyguard, is suspicious of Tsume, but Tsume quickly tells him that Burt Ficklefingers has escaped and Gristle barges past Tsume up the stairs. The party lay in wait and Maranwe mind-controls Gristle with a Crown of Madness but not before he yelps out a warning.

The boat outside the manor begins to move. Ropes tied to the boat begin to pull taut and soon Skeek grabs a rope and is being whipped through the manor. As he passes the party Raka mauls and almost kills Skeek, who is severely wounded. Mr Chips grabs a rope and is pulled up and out of the manor as well.

The boat is flying, higher and higher in the sky. Mr Chips lets go of the rope and flies over to Skeek, the horribly wounded goblin king who is holding on for dear life. Mr Chips snatches the Hades Stone from around Skeek’s neck and flies up to the boat and sets the sails on fire with a torch. A hail of arrows are aimed at him but fall short, except one which pierces his chest. The sails catch alight, and before long the boat is ablaze, goblins are burning alive on the decks or plummeting to horrible deaths in the swamp far below. The burning boat flies off into the mist as Mr Chips returns to the manor.

Inside, the party are ganging up on Gristle, who has been blinded by Vosk’s color spray magic. Gristle swings wildly with his devastating mace but hits no-one. Eventually Vosk beheads Gristle.

The party have recovered the Stone of Hades. Geronimo Hades is long dead. The Red Wardens are all killed with the exception of Kelp, whose fate is unknown. He is irreversibly tied into the arcane magic that powers the flying ship, which is now likely destroyed.

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