The Tiki Company's Epic adventure Great Job!

Familiar Faces
Part 1 of TTC Renewed

Six months. That’s how long I’ve been in hiding in this little pub in the desert town of Almernae. Six. Bloody. Months. I understand that it is necessary, that I must do whatever it takes to keep Machine off of my scent, but I believe that soon I will go mad if I’m pressed to stay in this basement for much longer. I can hear the world calling me and my feet ache to get back on the open road.

Heh…I suppose my time with the Tiki Company really has changed me.

I don’t mean to sound ungrateful for the kindness shown to me there in my time of need. I am eternally in debt to Teresa and Kiana for taking me in and giving me food and a warm cot to sleep in. And I have Artemis to thank for bringing me news from the outside world from time to time. But in my six months I spent locked up in the basement I had turned up no leads on Machine, and I neared the end of my rope.

I spent the last few days of my isolation tossing knucklebones against the wall, trying to catch a glimpse or hint at what was to come. Every time the bones gave the same answer: death. Something was coming, the calm before the storm had passed, and I needed to be prepared, but prepared for what? I had no leads, nothing to go on, and sooner or later Machine or one of his associates would track me to this pub and I would not have more innocent blood on my hands.

I was about to give up hope when Artemis returned with a news update. Apparently, someone had dropped off a letter at his office a few days ago addressed to me. The note read thus:

Greetings, friend.

I’ve happened upon bits and pieces of information here and there, and if my suspicions are correct, you are the one being hunted by the assassin known as Alexis Machine.

Worry not; the secret of your identity, as well as your whereabouts, are safe with me. I seek to help you; I have information that may prove useful to you.

Come to Red Rain Cave, west of Almernae. I’m in hiding at the moment. In order to find me, head downstream until you reach a moss-covered door. I’ll leave the rest up to you.

-An anonymous informant.

P.S. Bring food, I’m sick of eating rats.

Finally! A lead had presented itself! Now all that remained was to gather together what was left of The Tiki Company. I sent Emrys on his way, carrying with him a letter addressed to each of my former comrades and longtime friends: Peregrine Toque, Richard J. Buckles, Mersh, Belarin Urthador, and Duran-Duran. I could only hope that they would come, and I began to prepare. The game was afoot, and the first move was mine for the taking.

It was another two weeks or so after that before I heard the front door slide open upstairs and heard two pairs of feet walk across the floorboards upstairs. I smirked to myself as I heard the familiar banter and wordplay that only Peregrine was capable of. Now who was it that had accompanied him? He wouldn’t really have brought Bonnie along for the ride, would he? Or perhaps he met up with one of the others along the way?

I walked up to the main floor of the Dusty Drink to see Peregrine engaged in conversation with Teresa and a half-elf that I didn’t recognize. I greeted my old friend, saving him from Teresa’s wrath, and he introduced me to his new traveling companion, a bard by the name of Moira McGee. Apparently, Peregrine had his own troubles, running into another assassin after his blood, on his way to Almernae.

Forgive me, my Peregrine is a little rusty after two years of not speaking or listening to it, but the gist of the story was that he was looking for Mersh in Gootham on his way to join up with me only to find that Miss Moira had been commissioned by Mersh to watch Buck’s store, The Brass Buckle. I can’t imagine Buck would be very happy to hear that…and things were finally beginning to patch up between him and Mersh…

Afterwards, they ran into a group that was hunting Peregrine for some unknown reason led by a man called Ambercrombie who had been ordered by some “Illusive Man” to hunt him down. One of the group hunting them, Albion the rock-man (my Peregrine is still a little rusty, forgive the translation), had been working with them on the promise that he would receive help in finding his family. It turns out Ambercrombie was lying, and after he jumped from a tower, the rock-man had left to try and find his family. Moira, in the meantime, had asked to accompany Peregrine in his travels for the time being. She was well-versed in several “ballads” about The Tiki Company, something I was going to have to discuss with Artemis next time I see him.

It took some convincing, but after a few moments of chatter the three of us set out for Red Rain Cave, about a day-and-a-half’s journey from Almernae. This was a lead that could not be passed up, and I had already waited too long. Hopefully the rest of the company would join up with us later. The journey itself was uneventful, though I had forgotten how much I missed having a bard in the group to lighten the mood.

As we neared the basin, Emrys flew back from his scouting. An ogre stood between us and our destination. Watching the beast with its back turned to us, I suddenly missed having Buck, Duran, or Belarin in the party. None of us were exactly built for going toe-to-toe with a massive ogre. Though it seemed this didn’t occur to Peregrine forthwith, as he tried to sneak up on the ogre from behind, almost alerting it to his (and our) presence.

Moira and I quickly got the situation under control, using a combination of her lullaby and my Sleep spell to render the ogre helpless before us. We eliminated him before he became a threat. It may not have been the most honourable victory, but it was a victory nonetheless.

The ogre gone, we entered the cave to find this “friend” of mine that waited within. We followed the river flowing out of the cave to it’s source deeper into the basin where the light of day could not be seen. We trekked alongside the river and found a large area filled to the brim with hobgoblins and orcs.

Oh adventuring, sometimes I hate you so.

Time seems to have done us wonders with regard to strategy. Instead of charging in head first as we once did, we planned out a course of action. Under the protection of my Mage Armor, Peregrine took the charge, slaying the first enemy in a matter of seconds with a powerful kick to the head. Then, the battle began in earnest.

Peregrine nimbly slew goblin after goblin with his sword and axe, though at a great cost as the hoard focused on bringing down the halfling ranger. I cast some of my more powerful spells, burning and battering the goblins as they approached while Moira supported us all with her song. The battle wasn’t easy, but we won. The orcs and hobgoblins lay in pools of their own blood or burnt to a crisp or washed down the river until only one remained. I interrogated the terrified fellow with Moira’s assistance. The goblins knew nothing of this cave nor who inhabited it. They were simply planning an escape from the ogre when we happened onto them. The goblin fled as we continued our search.

I was immediately drawn to a moss-covered section of the cave wall. I had found a secret door, magically protected to only open when a riddle is answered correctly. Spent from the battle, we opted to answer the riddles instead of forcing our way in.

Apparently the cave was once home to a bandit by the name of Tokagero, and it was in his voice that the riddles were asked. One by one we passed the test and were permitted to enter the inner sanctum of Red Rain Cave. Inside, Peregrine and I were indeed met with another familiar face…Ogden Sadric.

It took us some time, but with thanks to Moira’s power over words, we were able to get all of the information that Ogden had to offer. The “Illusive Man” that hired Ambercrombie to eliminate Peregrine was the same man who sent Machine after me. For whatever reason, he’s wanted me dead for some time, and my two year hiatus only served to anger him into sending other assailants after my friends.

This…this will not stand. Nobody goes after my friends, my family, in order to get to me. I shall make this Illusive Man pay…

Ogden explained that he himself had been contracted by the Illusive Man to gather information on Belarin. It seemed that our sword-wielding friend had regained some of his lost memories and had returned home to Ontas on the West Coast. He was royalty, a despot of the city, whose real name was Belarin Vladislous, and for whatever reason he was seeking revenge against the Albright family of Golden Valley off the East Coast of Ashen. He was so caught up in revenge that he had hired the very assassin sent to kill me to exact it.

Belarin had found and hired Alexis Machine to kill the young Lady Albright.

As much as I wanted to journey to Ontas myself and have a few words with my former comrade…we needed to alert Lady Albright to her peril, and maybe catch Machine in the process…

We left Ogden in the cave and told him to make way for the Dusty Drink in Almernae with a note carrying my seal and left to plot our next move.

The game is afoot, and slowly the terms are coming into light. The first move has been made, Illusive Man, and now the dice pass to you. Play your little games, send all of the assailants you desire and I shall ensure that they are all brought down until all that remains is you.

The Tiki Company is piecing itself back together, better and stronger than ever, and we are coming for you.

You have no idea what you have just unleashed.

-Tibles
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The Chronicles of The Tiki Company
The Tale of TTC

Stories.

That’s all we really are in the end, stories. And when we die and our soul becomes one with the great aether, we see the story of our lives play before our eyes. We see all of those that we loved and those that we lost. We see our struggles and our failures; our victories and our happiest moments.

I remember when I was young I read so many stories in my studies. Even when my lessons were complete for the day I would find some nook in a tree and would spend hours upon hours enraptured by the stories in my books. The ballads of warriors in their fight against evil, a hymn of prayer and hope to light a dark hour, a sonnet of true love that not even the bonds of time could break, the myths of ancient magics long forgotten by the realm that held the ultimate power, histories of lands that most have only dreamed of beholding, even the common folklore of the towns and cities…I read them all time and time again. And the more I read, the more I longed to see the world for myself.

I desired nothing more than the chance to see the world’s stories with my own eyes and maybe even write a few myself along the way. But who was I to abandon my duties, to escape from my destiny? I was young, I was reckless, and I would not be confined by some predetermined fate. My life was my own, and I would make my own way.

How foolish I once was. I thought myself learned and wise, when all I really did was run. I suppose after all these years I’ve never stopped running.

And so I did just that, I ran away from my home, from my destiny, taking with me my spellbook and my only friend in my youth who would accompany me throughout all of my years until the end. Emrys was a cheeky falcon, but faithful, loyal, and held an unwavering spirit.

The “Wandering Wizard” they called me. Looking back on it now, I can see how well such a title befit me. I was reckless in my youth as I continued my travels from one town to the next, never staying in one place for longer than a few days at a time. When my magic could be of service, I would offer my assistance. Whenever a soul cried out for help, I would do what I could. I never wanted their praise, and so I left as quickly as I arrived, leaving naught but a name.

But this is not my story. Well, at least not entirely. I played my part, but this is the tale of a group of wayward adventurers that originated from all walks of life. None of them, myself included, would ever have imagined that they would band together and endure through trials that would test their strength, their fortitude, the will, and the bonds of friendship they forged that would through time prove to be unbreakable.

They became more than just friends on the road looking for adventure. Neigh, adventure found us. They became a family, my family. And like all families they were not without their own struggles, but through it all we remained just that. In a time of need we could count on one another for their support.

Through some force, call it destiny, or fate, or the will of the gods, or even simple happenstance, this group of the most unlikely of friends banded together to face the darkness of the world.

Over time our company changed, as all things must as we sail down the river of time. Some left to make their own mark and to start their own lives, others…others passed in the course of our journeys, and no matter how much I learned, how powerful I would become, I could not reverse the flow of time and bring them back. Time indeed is the greatest foe of all, one that cannot be beaten. We can try to escape its clutches for a time, but must all one day succumb to it.

My pardons, it seems I have began to ramble. Please excuse an old man as he reminisces, my mind is not as sharp as it used to be. At any rate…

We did not choose our path, it was given to us. I once believed that we could control our fates, and to an extent this is true, but we all have to face our destinies in due course. After all, you can only run for so long.

And it mattered not when we left the company, as we would for the rest of our lives carry with us the memories of our accomplishments and of each other. Even as we drifted apart, we would still look back on the times we spent together and a smile would grace our lips or a tear would fall silently as we recalled the loss of one of our own.

You see, we never really forgot each other. Not even death could keep the memories of our adventures at bay. Even once we had disbanded, we would still join together every year once or twice to pay our respects to those that had fallen, be it to the sword in battle or to the icy claws of time. Years after we retired from the adventuring life, I would still pay visits to my friends, my family, if for nothing more than to check up on their lives at peace. I became an “uncle” of sorts to their children that would wander into town every now and then to visit their father or mother.

Just because the company disbanded never meant that I stopped my wandering, I’ll have you know. I became “The Wandering Wizard” entirely, the road my home.

But again, this is not just my story. This is a story of a company of friends. This is our story.

This is the story of a rogue that grew up alone on the streets of the big city, learning how to pickpocket and steal as his means of survival, of his vows to avenge those that had fallen and of how he found love more than once in the company. The soul. Without him we would surely our way and fall into darkness.

This is the story of a old militia captain, discharged from his duty, that fell into our company, of his own acts of heroism and bravery that soon led to the restoration of his rightful position as a military leader. The shield. Without him, how could we defend ourselves from our foes?

This is the story of an estranged cleric who thirsted for adventure and craved for his name to become known to the world as the leader of a group of heroes. The pride. Without him we would surely fall into obscurity.

This is the story of a bar maiden, sworn to peace, that guided our company in ways that I could not and supported us in our times of need. Though she chose not to raise her blade to fight, we would not have succeeded were it not for her aid. The calm. Without her peace our rage would have known no bounds.

This is the story of a ranger, caught up in the wilderness, who joined our family on a whim and became one of the greatest friends I have ever had, a bond that I carried with me for the rest of my life. The heart. Without him we would surely have withered and died.

This is the story of an old war veteran turned blacksmith who took up arms again to lead us into battle and through the woods, a man greater than I by any standard who I looked up to for guidance. The leader. Without his guidance we would fall into chaos.

This is the story of a crowned prince who had lost his memory to the fates of time who ventured with this company to regain what was lost at a terrible price. The sword. Without him how could we vanquish those that would do us wrong?

This is the story of a boy taken down in his prime, who had sought to finally become a man in his adventures with us. I can tell you that when his time came, he had achieved his lifelong quest. The youth. Without him the world seemed greyer and less vibrant than before…

This is the story of a young bard with no home to call her own that sought adventure, to live out her dreams that old songs and ballads had given to her, who found that and a home of her own in the company. The voice. Without her, how could our story be known truly?

This is the story of a man who had lost his family and everything he held dear to a madman, who, once our enemy, found his vengeance and his peace in our group. The strength. Without him how could we have carried on in our darkest hour?

And lastly, this is also my story, the story of a wizard who had run away from home and had found his place in the world amongst these strangers. I guided them as best I could, imparting what little wisdom I had to offer. Alone, we were weak. Together, we were strong. The wisdom. Without it we would have met disaster.

Listen, my friends and to any of those who read this, listen to the chronicles of the Tiki Company.

Every life is a story, but sometimes it takes you a lifetime to see how these individual little tales interweave, entwine, and join together to create an epic unlike any other that you have ever seen. This is the story of the Tiki Company, of its fights, its victories, its losses, and of all of the lives we have touched.

We are all leaves on the wind, cast about in the storm of life as we dance through the storms of time. We all share our beginnings, and we all must meet our inevitable ends and destinies. That, however, is not what matters. As with a leaf caught on the wind, we all end up on the ground sooner or later. What really matters, what is really important, is the path that we forge for ourselves along the way. Like the leaves on the storm winds, each path we take is unique as we flit about in the dark.

My name is Tibles of the Blue Leaf Clan, and in these last hours of my life I chronicle the entirety of the Tiki Company. All of my friends have passed on, leaving this last duty to me. I owe it to them, to all of them. It is time that I look back on my life and face the end after my long years.

I am done running.

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A Halfling's Journey
Prelude to the rebooted campaign

It’s a lazy summer day when Peregrine Toque, a formerly-adventurous halfling, now settled down to a peaceful life with his wife Bonnie Baillie, his newborn child, and his massive longbottom leaf grow-up, receives and urgent letter from his old friend Tibles of the Blue Leaf Clan. Heeding the call for help, Peregrine journeys down south to Gootham, to find The Brass Buckle, the blacksmith shop formerly owned by Richard J. Buckles.

There, he meets a young half-elf bard by the name of Moira Maggee, who had been told to keep watch over the place by a young, dark-haired man.

Meanwhile, an Oread pit-fighter by the name of Albion Halberg, is ordered by his master, Abercrombie to capture or kill Peregrine Took. Heeding his master’s orders, he journeys with his fellow pit-fighter Orazid, and a group of other hired thugs to bring the halfling back to Abercrombie, dead or alive.

When they arrive at The Brass Buckle, Peregrine hides, and Moira opens the door. The thugs force their way inside, and begin searching for the halfling. Thinking quickly, Moira places a charm spell on Albion, causing him to turn on his companions when they show hostility towards her. A fight breaks out, Peregrine joins in, and in the end, the thugs are defeated.

One Tiefling is left alive for questioning. Albion, Moira, and Peregrine all agree to find Abercrombie and inquire as to why he sought the halfling. The Tiefling sees an opportunity, and flees while the three are deep in conversation.

Moira and Albion pursue the Tiefling, and Peregrine slips into the back room to uncover the clue that Tibles had left as to his whereabouts. With that, he catches up to his companions by riding his pony after them.

The Tiefling gets away, and it is decided that the group cut through the Tin Street Markets to get to the spire of the Arena, where Abercrombie is waiting for the group of thugs. The going isn’t easy, but the group makes it relatively unscathed.

Albion ties Peregrine’s hands in an easily undone knot, and enters the meeting place, informing Abercrombie that all the others had perished at the hands of the skilled halfling and a few of his accomplices. When Abercrombie’s guards move in to carry the halfling away, Peregrine undoes the knots, and the duo makes short work of them.

A cornered Abercrombie reveals that he never had any intention of finding Albion’s parents, and was simply using that as a tool to make the foolish Oread stay. He reveals that he was ordered to find and capture Peregrine Toque, or uncover any information on The Tiki Company, by a thick-accented, mask-wearing man in a fireside armchair.

When it is clear Abercrombie’s life now holds little value, he jumps off the spire, ending it before divulging any more information. Moira resolves to join Peregrine for her own reasons, and head south to meet Tibles in Almernae. Albion decides to hunt around for some actual leads on the whereabouts of his family, and the two groups go their separate ways.

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As the Phoenix from the Ashes
Prologue

Dear Journal,

Today marks the two-year anniversary of our victory over Captain Krogan. I still remember that final battle; it haunts me still to this day. After we escaped from that horrid prison on Buck’s pirate ship, we journeyed to the Island of the Crystals. There, we removed the curse of the Soulsword from Buck and Belarin was more than happy to take up the charge. Blade in hand, we set out to put a stop to the pending doom that we unknowingly brought to all of Ferramorrah, killing the four ghosts we released and filling the Soulsword. The last ghost was particularly gruesome, I recall, and we almost lost Peregrine in the fight, but we were victorious all the same. We had never felt so close, so connected. Buck, Peregrine, Belarin, Borris, and I, a group set out to change the world, we were invincible.

It wasn’t until we returned to our ship that we realized the apocalypse was still coming; the clouds of doom almost enveloped Lavanda. We had failed. The seas began to roar and churn, the wind howling through the ears of men, women, and children alike. Upon returning to Lavanda, we were surprised to find a fleet of ships, both Lavandan and Bishkan, awaiting our arrival. If we were to go down, we were to go down fighting. The joint fleet of Lavanda and Bishk, such an alliance not seen in neigh a millennia, assembled north of the Lavandan capital. And there we stood. On the edge of sanity and light, me, Buck, Peregrine, Borris, and Belarin, standing shoulder to shoulder, weapons drawn, a sense of doom creeping up our spines and that strange exhilaration battle brings. There we stood; well knowing this could be the end of us all. We needed not any words, for we all knew what was at stake.

Then, the battle began. Demon after demon, ghoul after ghoul, body after body, we fought our way into the heart of the storm. Time seemed to stand still as we worked our way through wave after wave of monstrosity, friend and foe falling at all sides. There, in the eye of the storm, as our ships entwined in the midst of a great whirlpool, we confronted none other than Krogan himself. We started this war, and we were going to end it, no matter the cost. It was a bitter battle, and in the midst of the fighting, we all watched in horror as Krogan struck down Borris. His body fell limp, lifeless in front of me, and I got one last chance to see the life fading from his eyes as his body fell into the raging waters. We didn’t even get a chance to give our friend and ally a proper burial. Filled with renewed vigor and a reawakened strength, we took our revenge on Krogan. Belarin struck him through his black heart with the Soulstealer, and with one last vengeful wail, Krogan’s soul and essence returned to the blade, and the Soulstealer shattered in Belarin’s hand.

The fighting was over, Krogan was defeated, Ferramorrah was saved, but at what cost?

After the battle, everyone seemed so numbed and so shaken, that the group slowly began to drift apart. First to leave was Buck, who decided to remain in Lavanda and continue his fallen comrade Jackson’s memory. I’ve tried keeping in touch with Buck, but I fear he’s becoming more distant and more withdrawn. He’s been writing less and less, and I fear the man who I once counted as my closest friend is lost forever.

When we returned to Gootham, we found that Mersh had vanished without a trace, leaving a note making it clear that he did not want to be found. I know not what transpired while we were across the sea, but whatever happened, it was enough to drive Mersh away as well. I have searched across the land for my old friend, but to no avail. For the time being, Mersh wants to remain missing, and I have no choice but to abide by his wishes.

Next to leave was Belarin, whom without his sovereign, Buck, to whom he swore fealty, left the group shortly after returning to Ashan. I’ve kept tabs on Belarin, and it seems he’s made some success as a sword-for-hire in northern Ashan. He seems more confident since we parted ways, and I hope he hasn’t become too invested in his mercenary business to ignore my call.

Finally, Peregrine was the last to leave my company. We traveled together for a few weeks. We were both still recovering from the aftermath of the battle, and Peregrine was more solemn than I ever care to see him again. He eventually left when we encountered Bonnie near Nailo Harbour. We still keep in touch, and I go down to visit him at his cottage home in western Ashan. He tells me his new home reminds him of the Shire, and he plans on settling down there with Bonnie. Last I checked he had a son with Bonnie, Baldor, who I have yet to meet, and is making a living growing copious amounts of longbottom leaf.

As for me, I’ve spent the last couple years wandering about Ashan, and I fear something evil is once again on the horizon. A shadow creeps across the southern borders, and I can’t help but ignore a feeling of dread creeping into the edge of my mind. The assassin that has long-since haunted my dreams is still on the lookout for me, and I fear that his employer is growing more and more restless. Until recently, I had been staying in Gootham, trying to unravel the mystery of his motives. One night, as I was returning from Artemis’s office, I was pursued by a group of dretch, degenerate demons who were clearly serving whim of some higher master. Fearing the worst, I retaliated, and went into hiding in the city sewers for fear of being exposed.

It wasn’t long after that night in Goothum that Artemis contacted me. He told me of a pub in Almernae where I could find sanctuary. He said in his letter that an old friend of mine was helping run the pub, and it turned out to be none other than Teresa.

It turns out Teresa is helping her new friend, Kiana Alan, run the pub after her father’s death at the hands of Alexis Machine. The moment I entered the pub, it all came back to me. Machine’s cruel sneer, his merciless eyes, and the lifeless body of her father bleeding out on the table… I can’t bring myself to tell her I know of her father’s death, not yet, not until Machine is dead and buried. Teresa and Kiana have sheltered me for the past 6 weeks, and only now do we finally have a lead on the whereabouts of Alexis Machine. It’s not much to go on, but Artemis was contacted by an anonymous informant who stays that he has information on the assassin. I feel that I have no other alternative but to call my old friends and reunite The Tiki Company. Together, we may have a chance to solve this puzzle.

“And, as the phoenixes of lore,
Rising from the ashes anew,
Their friendship shall be rekindled,
The Staunch Dragonborn,
The Stoneminded halfling,
The Silver-tongued maiden,
The Heirslayer,
And the Wandering Wizard,
They will rise once more
To defend this world from the evil that plagues it”
-Kluya, Seer of All, “Chronicles of the Blue Leaf Clan”

If you’re wondering why I’ve waited until now to start writing, it is because I can feel that my time is running out, and this may be my last chance to chronicle the adventures of what is left of The Tiki Company. I can only hope that my friends will hear my call and answer before it is too late…

-Tibles
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Spiders, Loot, and Rogues Oh My!
Part 15 in Crazy's Campaign

We introduced Edward to Buck, and after Buck shouted a few commands to his pirate compadres, we decided to find the rest of our missing party, namely Jackson, Nakisha, and Bonnie. We all knew how invincible Belarin is, so we decided to leave him to his devices, and was probably plundering underneath the prison having the time of his life, no chance at all he was stuck on a staircase and drowning, right? We swam through the flooded trap room, picking up what could be salvaged, and we came into a non-flooded tunnel, and while Peregrine explored a tunnel only he could fit through, Buck, Borris, and I searched through a storage room while Edward tried to remember which way to go from here. Not only did we recover all of our stolen equipment, but I found that the containers also contained greater goods than we already possessed. For me, a Serpentine Staff, Crystalline Orb, Belt of Fortitude, and Ornament of Perception. For Buck, a cloak that allowed him to teleport and belt. For Peregrine, a magic cloak and amulet. We also found some loot for Belarin and would hold on to it for him. Borris also found a belt too, but that’s not important.

Peregrine exited the small tunnel carrying with him for weed than he had already possessed, and seemed higher than usual. Edward remembered the way and led us up a ladder into a very dusty room with footprints leading out into the hall. Edward and I followed the footprints into a large room with a pool table and the footprints continuing down to a blocked door. Buck took the initiative here and set some explosives and lit the fuse, and after the ka-boom, we saw a creepy looking old guy with spider tattoos on the other side. He spoke something insane to Peregrine, and both he and Edward drew their bows, and the rest of us prepared for battle as well. Borris decided to run back to the ship, but it mattered not, for it was 4 vs. 1, or at least it was, until the old guy batted aside the arrows launched and from him arm spawned 3 spiders that blocked the way to him. The spiders were easy enough to dispose of, or at least they were until the old guy spawned another one, this one the size of me, and very angry.

When things were looking up for us, the insane guy simply laughed, retreated further into the chamber, and pushed over a pillar, blocking the way to him. We slaughtered the spider, and when Buck, Peregrine, and I returned to the main chamber saw an elvish woman standing by the pool table. We stood agasp, and when we asked her how she got here, she said she swam, training for a marathon. She introduced herself in elvish, leaving Buck and Peregrine confused, and she simplified her name to Rhia for Buck and Peregrine, and we introduced ourselves. She was shocked to say the least when Edward walked into the room with his scythe covered in spider gore, and Buck gave her a torch and told her to make herself useful. There was yet another door that Edward took care of this time, and it conveniently led to the same room the crazy old guy was in.

He had fled the room however, and while Rhia, Edward and I investigated the far right side of the room, Buck and Peregrine examined a couple of rooms in the back. At the far right side of the room, Rhia and I found a spiral staircase heading downwards with water at the bottom, but before we could investigate further we heard maniacal laughter coming from a pit at the left side of the room. The pit was littered with dry spider webs and seemed to go down for eternity and it wasn’t until Buck pried himself away that I came. He broke down the door to one of the two rooms in the back and found it littered with bodies, each wearing the same uniform, and each from the Lavandran Imperial Army.

Buck let loose a cry, and when I came I found him standing over the body of his fallen friend, Jackson. We saw that the soldiers died in battle, and Jackson with them, and that one of the soldiers was wearing a strange amulet. Buck in dismay, I promised him we would find who did this, and we would exact vengeance for Jackson’s death.

-Tibles
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Oh, There He Is...
Part 14 in Crazy's Campaign

We continued delving into the depths of this prison in the middle of the ocean, and we found that there was indeed a port, but the entrance to it was blocked by some surviving dragonborn guards who refused to allow us access. We soon found a single hallway leading towards the back of the prison, so Borris and I decided to investigate while Belarin and Peregrine were off exploring. It didn’t take long to notice that the hallway was littered with trap wires, each releasing separate and more dangerous traps as you progressed. I went in first, and despite my best efforts, was hit with a few traps, but eventually made my way through to the other side soon followed by Peregrine and Belarin who triggered their fair share of traps. Borris, being the ass he is, waited for all of us to progress through until he made his way through, so very confident we had triggered all but one or two of the traps, and it brought a smile to my face when he found that no, there were still a fair number left. Whoever did this was clever and had a lot of material to work with, alchemic and otherwise.

After everyone had made their way through, we entered into a large room supported by several pillars, and on the balcony at the back of the room stood an elf wielding a giant scythe, and instead of launching his assault, he asked us whether we were friendlies. We answered yes, and he made his way down to us, Peregrine still not trusting of him (probably because of the traps) and he introduced himself as Content Not Found: edward-v-tribal, an artificer who had been locked up in this prison for misleading a known mob-boss from Bishk in search of his wares. He explained to us why he had set up the traps (because of the various insane and dangerous prisoners kept here) and lent us his assistance. He provided Belarin with new armor and gave us a place to sleep for the night, away from the jail cells and insane cannibals.

In the middle of the night, however, something stirred us from our sleep, and as Edward approached the far wall of the cavern, he told us all to back away to the other end of the chamber. Before any of us could ask why a GIANT PIRATE SHIP CRASHED IN THROUGH THE WALL FLOODING THE CHAMBER ALMOST KILLING US, APPARENTLY PIRATES ARE NOTORIOUSLY BAD SHIP DRIVERS, OR AT LEAST THE CAPTAIN OF THIS SHIP WAS!!! Belarin swam away down the stairs as the chamber flooded, probably in an attempt to save all of our lives, and Edward’s familiar Edgar didn’t return after being sent to the ship, so I sent Emrys ahead. Whilst we swam towards the ship, we saw Buck, wearing a rather large pirate hat, stand at the front of the ship and called our names into the flooded chamber. We answered, and he threw his trusty chain into the chamber so we could climb up. Wet as dogs, we each greeted our lost friend and my question was answered. Buck’s on a pirate ship, and he almost killed us, great.

Well, what are friends for, right?

-Tibles
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Where's Buck?
Part 13 of Crazy's Campaign

I awoke on a haystack in a dimly lit jail cell. My head throbbing, I tried to get my bearings and saw Peregrine smoking a hidden joint in the cell across from mine and saw what appeared to be three dragonborn guards soaked in blood, dead on the floor. After exchanging a few words with Peregrine, I summoned up a makeshift key and was able to pick the lock to my cell, and as I did so a skinny old man approached on all fours like some kind of animal. He didn’t see me, but commented on how “delicious” Peregrine looked, and that he would come back for him later, it was then he began dragging one of the dead guards around the corner and we heard the sickening noises of him feasting on flesh.

A window of opportunity came before us, and we took it. I opened my cell and handed Peregrine my makeshift key and he skillfully opened the door of his cell. With no weapons, Peregrine made due with his fists whilst I used some magic to quickly dispose of the cannibal, and while we could not give these guards a burial, we stopped their bodies from being desecrated any further. We found a couple tools for Peregrine to use, a small key, and a note mentioning a prison riot. We began to roam the prison, and found a couple barrels filled with weapons so Peregrine and I armed ourselves and took a couple extra swords for the others for when we would find them. We also found what looked like an office, and in it, we found another dead dragonborn who appeared to be a prison warden as he carried a key ring which we liberated him of. In the office was another jail cell, and in it was an old man strapped onto some kind of torture device. We liberated him and healed him as best we could, the man, named Rufus, was to weak to go on, so we let him lie down and rest his weary soul.

Leaving Rufus behind, Peregrine and I continued onwards and were soon forced to split up, Peregrine heading up a large spiral staircase whilst I journeyed up a large staircase blocked by a cage wall, which I was able to open thanks to the key ring. At the top of the stairs, I found a makeshift barrier manned by three dragonborn guards who were not pleased to see me. After negotiating with them and dropping my weapons, they allowed me to approach and enter their infirmary and I was sent to work before I could ask any questions making potions for their doctor. When I finished, I found the head guard, a tall, stubborn, and rather unpleasant dragonborn who refused to let me leave to find Peregrine and the others. I convinced him to let me go, but I could not return, but it bothered me not as I did not want to return to a place such as that. I ventured up the spiral staircase and at the top found a nearly dead knoll, Peregrine’s handiwork for sure, and I later found him at odds with Belarin, dangling in a cage several feet off the ground.

Belarin, stubborn as he is, insisted on somehow bending the bars of his cage on his own, and we noticed a sort of pulley system that passed through the wall behind Belarin into another room. We exited the courtyard and in an adjacent room, we found Borris in a cell, looking as if he had enjoyed his stay more than we had, and once we freed him and supplied him with proper weapons, we found the control room of the pulley system and released Belarin’s cage. Once we freed him from the crater his cage created, we saw he was ill equipped and not in pique conditions. Nonetheless, he took charge and ventured forth into the prison. Now with Belarin and Borris freed, this left one important question.

Where’s Buck?

-Tibles
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The End?
Part 12
Supplementary music

The blaring of rifles echo through the darkened mist around us. From silence to thunder it echoes across the corpses of the enemy; peacefulness broken by ear-splitting cries from barrels as the remaining heroes rush to rescue their unconscious comrades from the hell-fire of lead. The brave and valiant Peregrine, Buck, and Belarin rush to pull some of the bound individuals away and successfully save 3; Bonnie, Tibles, and Nakisha respectively. As the bullets pelt our heroes Buck and Peregrine grip each others hands with an air of bromance. Belarin, furious as he is, is deflecting almost every pellet that spikes towards him.

As the flurry calms and the thick gun-powdery smoke clears. Buck and Peregrine are standing, blood spilling from their still stable bodies, while Belarin remains virtually untouched. As the two martyrs now lazily drift to their backs, words struggle out of Buck's quivering mouth; "So this is the end?" They fall prone and spill blood into thick, crimson pools; their faces tell tales of friendship and hardship, good and bad, but being together all the way. Fond regard of this time together is shared between them as liveliness fades from their faces. Rain drops start to drizzle over the barely living souls that are collapsed on the ground, glaring at the sky.

Rain falls, blood drips as silence fills the air, descending faster and faster as they fall. Arms increasing to flex and contort around the hilt of his blades, Belarin stares down at the bodies of his friends, his comrades, his new family. Raising his pale and sunken face, a single tear runs down his left cheek and falls to the ground. His own blood trickling down his arms and across to the tips of les épée. Various emotions brooding, he slinks forward.

The crew of the ship quickly drops their now exhausted ranged arsenal and draw various melee combat tools. Ranging from clubs to long swords to halberds they all shuffle towards Belarin. Both blades gripped tightly he reels around and quickly guts a pirate. They all begin to draw upon him. Both blades flying independently yet in unison, they blocks and shield attacks left and right. Rain pouring across the sleek metallic shafts gives them hints of glory, bloodied they are not, and valiant they will stand upon this impossible battle.

But alas, an impossible battle cannot be won, as a halberd flies down he has to use both blades crossed to block, a moment of opportunity taken by a pirate behind him. Sleek crimson spires jut out from the weakened hero then quickly retract. Falling to the knees... blood spilling from an open stab wound into puddles of water and blood onto the deck. The rain dribbles down his armor to the ground with an air of completeness, from ground to sky then it returns to ground, finishing it's only goal just to start it again. Wild eyes turn to disappointed ones as they close for the penultimate time. Foot steps trod across the damp wooden deck towards Belarin. His eyes glance up and a figure seen through warm tears and cold rain is possibly the captain. The eyes close shut and a sharp push backwards sends Belarin to his end. The great, intrepid adventurer sails backwards and clatters lifelessly against the cold, wet wood.

With all of them unconscious, this may be the end… the end to love, hate, agreeance, and debate. The end to smiles, frowns, empty-pockets, and crowns. The end to it all.

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Battle in the Sky
Part 11

The shit’s hit the whirling device here. After a few hours in the airship, we noticed that a big black arcane cloud was approaching us from the stern. Tibles sent his eagle Emryss to scout it out for us, and the demonic little bird came back to us with a warning that we were being chased by a military vessel.

Tibles had equipped us with special ammunition and alchemical weapons, but that certainly wouldn’t be enough. We were overtaken by the superior ship, and before we knew it, we had been enveloped in dark purple fog. We manned our battle-stations and prepared for the worst. They were upon us in an instant, and wasted no time in ripping holes in the side of our airship, then boarding us. Belarin and Peregrine swung over to their ship, while me, Tibles, Boris, Jackson, Bonnie, Nakisha, and most of the crew stayed behind. When pirates set foot on our deck, I knew our ship would be going down. Tibles headed below deck, and found Jackson. I headed down there as fast as I could, and helped Tibles carry out an injured Nakisha and a terror-stricken bonnie.

Meanwhile, our crew was being slaughtered, and Peregrine and Belarin were ripping holes in the enemy’s forces aboard their own ship. Our vessel was done for, so me, Tibles, Boris, Nakisha, and Bonnie swung onto the pirate ship.

Through the fog it was hard to make out, but I thought I heard Belarin and Peregrine towards the stern. I made my way over, to see them standing atop a pile of corpses, fighting with all their might. Amidst the chaos, I lost track of the others, but the three of us fought as hard as we could. Peregrine delivering precise cuts with his scimitars, Belarin repeatedly cheating death and defying all odds against him, and me, giving as much medical support as I could.

In the end, we killed the guards, and stood panting atop a pile of mutilated corpses. We took a moment to catch our breath, enveloped in fog, taking in the utterly silent stillness around us. Our ship was gone, as was the crew.

Peregrine began walking towards the ship’s bow, and immediately his sighs of relief turned to calls of alarm. The mist lifted enough to show a force of pirates, at least three dozen, surrounding our bound and restrained comrades. They had guns aimed at us.

I told them that if they were planning on killing us, we would gladly take them down too. I aimed my crossbow at the air bladder above us. Belarin and Peregrine both aimed up as well. Whoever the captain was, he must have had some sort of death wish. He told us to go ahead. We obliged, and with a loud pop, broke three nicely shaped holes in the only thing holding us afloat. The ship began to descend.

The captain demanded that I relinquish the sword that I had taken. I politely told him ‘no.’

He ordered the crew to fire upon us.



-Richard J. Buckles

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The Monsoon
Part 10 of Crazy's Campaign

With Krogan seemingly vanquished, we began drawing up plans of escape, and our choices were narrowed down to the hole in the 90 foot tall roof in Krogan’s room, seeing as the way behind was blocked by cave-ins and giant spiders. At long last, we finally tied together enough rope and chain to a grappling hook and tossed it and got it latched onto the ground outside. Peregrine, being the lightest of us, climbed up first and upon reaching the top, found that a monsoon had formed outside during our spelunking in the pirate cave on Dweller’s Isle. He found a palm tree nearby to tie the grappling hook to for further support, and one by one, we began to climb the rope. First Bonnie, then Nakisha, the other woman, myself, Jackson, Belarin, Borris, and finally Buck.

Once we had all reached the fresh air of the outside world we looked around and found ourselves on the top of a mountain in the middle of the island. The gale force winds and relentless downpour of rain forced us to improvise ways of getting down the slippery, muddy mountain. Buck, Bonnie, and Peregrine all shared Buck’s heavy shield and tobogganed down the mountain side, soon followed by Borris on his axe, and Jackson, Nakisha, and the other woman on Jackson’s giant shield. Belarin and I were forced to use our cloaks as makeshift sails and glided down the mountainside, landing far away from the others in the middle of a forest. Belarin and I made our way to the shoreline from where we saw the docks and walked along the coastline until we met up with Buck and the others.

With the monsoon still in great strength, we were forced to make camp on the beach using whatever we could find as shelter and Buck pitching a tent. I awoke early the next morning and found the captain of the airship wandering around the island looking for us and I also saw that our ship had been taken away by the monsoon. The captain explained to me that by taking the crystal sword, we unleashed a curse that threatened to destroy the entire world unless we find and kill 5 of the spirits that escaped when we took the sword. After telling my friends this at breakfast, not only had we found that the mysterious woman had disappeared, but also decided to travel to Vender’s Islands where there was a crystal that would free Buck’s hand. The 5 spirits we needed to kill would find us, and if we cured Buck, Belarin, a master of the sword, would take the sword and would deal the final blow to each of the 5 spirits we needed to kill.

We packed up camp and with Nakisha and Bonnie, jumped aboard the captain’s airship, and began the quest we had unknowingly set ourselves…

-Tibles

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