Saturday, 27 July 2013

[actual play] Iron Kingdoms - Adamantine Will

Episode 2 : Witchfire - The Longest Night - Part 4
Hurst looked at the wax, and Brother Eckert already could see that someone had been practicing necromancy here. The troupe left the dank cavern and the murky bone pit. There were only a few chambers left, which were of no consequence, and really further proved how foul the acts of the Orgoth were. But one chamber was important. The tomb. The seals upon the door had been broken, and from with there was no sound.
Gregore kicked open the door and his lantern illuminated the chamber, casting ghastly shadows over the hewn stone walls. Within were 4 stone coffins, and stood like statues were five mouldering thralls. The figures were clad in the old armour of the human kingdoms that predated the coming of the Orgoth. The bore rusting great weapons and the silently turned to face the intruders. A dry rasping sound escaping their mouths, an impossible thing, but of course so was their animation. Gregore, seeing the threat stormed forward and rained a series of blows upon the closest thrall, his great weapon cleaving bone and armour. Hurst moved, clearing a firing line for Darcey, and rolled a grenade into the the throng of undead, filling the room with the smell of sulphur as two skeletons were immolated, yet still they shambled forward. Darcey leveled her rifle and fired, the sound of the gun shot echoing through the chamber like thunder, and her shot shattered the skull of one of the burning dead. Eckert made the sign of Morrow, and unleashed from has holy staff a series of blinding bolts of blessed light, that pounded into the dead, and causing a further one of the flaming dead to collapse.
The remaining dead rushed forward and surrounded Gregore, swinging their great swords in carving arcs. Gregore ducked and rolled and corroded steel bit into the stone floor and his armour. Blood seeped out from under his armour and his arm felt numb. But he grit his teeth and brought his own blade down on one of the dead, but could not land a killing blow. Hurst had no safe way to shoot his pistol, let alone use another grenade, and so he paused, waiting for his chance. Both Eckert and Darcey charged into the fray, bringing their great staff and mace down upon the dead, splintering bone and reducing the dead to a heap of bones. Seeing his chance Hurst rushed forward, drawing his dagger, and with a swift cut served the skull from the body of the last thrall.
With the thralls no more, they looked about the chamber. Within each of the stone coffins were wooden coffins. Chains would ave bound them, but the coffins had been broken open, and the corpses were gone. At the base of each of the stone coffins were brass plaques, recording the date of their execution, their crime, and their names. Of course one corpse and coffin was missing. Lexaria Ciannor. About each coffin was a circle of red dust, sigils of some form, and numerous burnt candles lined the magic circles. Discarded there was a ball of thick black yarn and a thick needle. It was clear that whoever the woman in white was, she had come and stitched the heads of the dead back on and animated the dead.
With more questions than answers the troupe left the tomb, bidding the Gobber tribe goodbye, and assuring them that the undead had been dealt with. The Gobbers were only half interested, as they were part way through making a stew.
The party of witch hunters rode back to Corvis, and through the misty streets. Snow was gently falling, given the City of Ghost a certain fairytale look. Revellers paraded in masks and watch fire breathers and jugglers,as it was now just 2 nights until the Longest Night festival.
Returning to the cathedral the party went to speak with Father Dumas. In the warm of the vicarage they explained what they had found. Of most concern was that they believed that Lexaria herself had risen and was the one perpetrating these crimes. Father Dumas assured them that such a thing was impossible. He would not tell them where the tomb of his sister was, but that he knew she had not risen. Darcey asked it there was anything unusual about the events of the execution, for Darcey had already learnt much of the event from Alexia. She knew that when the final witch, Lexaria, was killed, the executioner was sent realing from the stage by some unknown force. Father Dumas explained that he never knew the identity of the man, but that the blade used was unusual, and that perhaps it was of Orgoth design, but again refused to tell them where it lay, fearing it was now cursed.
Given what they did and didn't know, Hurst headed to the library to perform some research, while also watching Father Dumas, wanting to learn where the body of Lexaria lay. They knew that Magistrate Borloch was not to be trusted, but that they had to be delicate in addressing is corruption. Darcey headed off to speak to Alexia once more. Knocking on the door she found the girl, who appeared distracted. She explained she was about to leave to watch another performance with friends, and that she had been making a mask for the festival. She again asked that Darcey not tell her uncle. Darcey looked at Alexia's fingers and saw the red wax under her finger nails and staining them. Darcey bid the girl goodbye, and sort somewhere nearby to hide and from where she could then watch and follow her.
Half an hour later Alexia left, wearing a large black cape, with the hood drawn to conceal her face. She also carried a large black satchel with her. Darcey followed the girl, and she was led through the city, down winding alleyways, until Darcey found a deadend, and Alexia gone. She looked around There were no doorways for her to have gone through, and no way she could have scale the walls. But there were footprint inthe snow, leading and apparently going through the wall.
Darcey fetched, and returned with Brother Eckert and Gregore, and together they were able to force a secret door open. Gregore raised his lantern and guided them down the slippery stone tunnel, and under foot water was running. The tunnel turned and led down and to a iron grate, and beyond was a larger tunnel. Water rushed down as a frantic pace, and they followed the narrow path along the waterway. They came to a rotting plank and found where the waterway led. Before them was a large sink, and the water spiralled downwards, more than able to sucking a man down to his death. Gregore edged along the plank, holding the end of Darcey's rope. Darcey, as she was the lightest, went next, holding the rope while Eckert held the other end. This allowed Darcey to put more of her weight into the rope and allow the plank to endure longer. She grimaced when Gregore suggested 'ladies first' as if it was for her own safety, rather than practicality. She pounded him on the arm once she reached the other side, knowing that in a fair fight she was more than able to taking the knight on. Eckert was the last to follow.
They continued along the waterway, and reached a door. From beyond it they heard no sound, the rushing water obscuring almost their own whispers. They edged the door open and moved in. They found the room was large and was obviously occupied. There were drapes on the walls, and in one of the far corners a crate that acted as a makeshift table. Upon it were books and about it cushions. In the nearest corner there was a magic circle, just like the one they had found in the Orgoth tomb. From the furthermost door on the left Alexia appeared. She was about to shut the door but stopped. Before Eckert or Darcey had the chance to talk and reason with the young woman, Gregore grinned. 'Catch!' He made to hurl his lantern at her, but Alexia was far quicker. She muttered something in Telgesh, and luminous purple runes spiralled about her left had as she pointed at them. A cloud of burning, choking ash erupted about them, and obscured their sight. 'Stop them!' Alexia shouted, and she ran.
Gregore ran forward and could not see where Alexia had gone, and where she was standing, now two thralls were instead, having come from the chamber.

No comments:

Post a Comment