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Session/Game: Marches 3e #30        Date: 11/4/2001

Campaign Date: Odec 3 - Odec 11 IY 469

K'Leif , elf ranger-10, CG, Charles Tillinghast
Gabriel Leadfoot, halfling rogue-7 ranger-1 fighter-1, NG, Mike Miller
   Zeitgeist, faerie dragon sorcerer-6, NG, cohort
Sir Ostler, human cleric-10, LN, Joe Fryar
Ragnar, human rogue-11, CG Shaun Sipple
Angus McNasty, gnome illusionist-9, CN Dave Nelson
   Beavis McNasty, gnome barbarian-5, CN cohort
Rannos, human fighter-12, CG Bob LaForge
   Scagnetti human sorcerer-8, CG cohort


Odec 3rd
The afternoon after the sacking of Blacksword the heroes decide to take it easy. One third of the outer walls of Blacksword are knocked flat. All the buildings are looted and befouled. There is severe fire damage that has gutted the main blockhouse. All the food is eaten (giants are hungry!), magic items broken, and alchemists sets are ruined. The artifacts of Morpheus are nowhere to be found.

Sarissa is buried near the fort alongside other fallen heroes Issac and Garl. The heroes decide to spend the night in Ludwig at Granny Holdbean's tavern. All the citizens of Blacksword and Ludwig are notified that the threat has ended. The citizens of Blacksword find whatever shelter they can in the ruins of the fort, perhaps looting it further in search of any blankets, food, clothing, and shelter they can use with the onset of winter. Brother Frankie stays with the citizens doing his best to provide food, healing, and curative spells for the refugees.

Meanwhile, the army of Goldhaft traveled back the way it came, falling into the traps set on the Baltburg road for them in the first place. Several die of starvation or attacks from brigand druidic Gnolls who have moved into the Old Wood.

Odec 4th
Ostler has a nightmare in which two servants of the Empire, both brothers pledged to serve are fighting to the death. He wakes, just as holy warriors of the Order of St. Hugo come crashing through his inn window. They keep coming and coming, and although Ostler is able to bring down several he eventually falls beneath the blows of their maces raining down on the knight.

Ostler awakens. The attack was just a dream. Sitting at the foot of the bed is the Avenging Avatar of Bor. He makes some comments to the fact that he is jealous that Ostler is able to sleep, a phenemenon that outsiders are denied. After pointing out how peaceful Ostler looked the Avatar continued. He says that there was a war of outsiders against the demons of chaos. Some outsiders loyal to Bor were picked to be warriors and were sent to the Abyss to fight the demons. Others were chosen to stand by Bor in paradise. The warriors eventually won out, but were shunned as they tried to return to paradise. Apparently, their contact with chaos had tainted them in some way, making them unfit to live in the presence of the Justicefather in the opinion of those outsiders who did not fight. The Avenging Avatar was the leader of those fighting outsiders. His anger grew with his bretheren until he declared war on paradise, trying to get back in. However, he and his followers were all repulsed. They had no home, and were forced to live back in the Abyss that they had just cleared.

The Avatar dreams of the day when he can return to paradise to sit peacefully by Bor's throne. He hopes that one day he will be able to do something spectacular enough to force the Justicefather to recognise him and let him back in. The Avatar has set his sight on making all on the world of Caedes subject to the law of Bor, starting with the Empire of the Seven Swords. "Isn't the Empire already under the law of Bor?" Ostler asked. The Avatar pointed out that the Empire is only under one-seventh of the control of the law of Bor. In order to cement that rule, all law must look to the Prelate as the supreme ruler.

The Avatar points out that this is why he has been incarnated again. Because a loyal follower of Bor has taken up the reliquary of the Avatar, the outsider is once again flesh and blood. However, at any time the Avatar says that the holder of that reliquary has the power to command him. The Avatar tells Ostler that he fears that Archbishop Daas has that reliquary, and that the Avatar suspects that the Archbishop will use that power unwisely. In order to prevent the fall of the Empire to civil war as the last time that the Avatar was incarnated, the Avatar wishes that Ostler take up that burden and aid the Avatar by letting the Avatar follow his own agenda. Ostler says that he will consider the Avatar's words and do his best to free the reliquary. Ostler awakens in actuality this time, and wonders if the visit of the Avatar was also just a vivid dream.

That afternoon, Gabriel returns from the woods with some news of his adventure with Trevor Stone and attacks by the Quiet Man. Gabriel points out that part of the church is insane and it is trying to overthrow secular rule of the Empire. According to Trevor, the madness goes as high as Archbishop Daas. The reason why Trevor knows is that he has been researching the "death" of his brother Amien. He eventually found Amien serving the Archbishop. How the ghostwalker and the Archbishop came into league with one another, or how Amien became a walking ghost of vengance were not discussed. Gabriel lets the other heroes know that Trevor is dead, killed by his own brother's hand.

K'Leif the ranger arrives at Blacksword. He reads the events of the sacking and the great battles in the tracks made by the combatants, and follows the path of the victors back to Ludwig. K'Leif is here to thank the heroes of Blacksword for their honorable treatment of his sister, Clarice. Clarice was the druid of Heathton, originally from the Elfwind Barony. She aided the citizens who were transplanted to Blacksword until she was executed to serve as an example by the more sinsiter druids of the Old Wood. The heroes accept the help of the hardy elven ranger with little disagreement.

Meanwhile, Rannos and Whitefire find themselves chained to the wall in a series of underground cells. They meet Threst the Confessor, a member of Bor's Inquisition and his eunich sidekick Onion. Threst questions the two characters one at a time. First, he reads to them the charges of treason put forth against them.

Sir Rannos
You are accused of heresy against the church of Bor.

  • We have witness testimony showing the fact that you have participated in public drunkenness.
  • We have witness testimony showing that you have befouled the heads of decapitated monsters.
  • We have witness testimony suggesting that you have participated in the slaughter of innocent servants of the Justicefather in Heathton.
  • There is material evidence linking you to the worship of the Abominations.

    Sir Whitefire
    You are accused of heresy against the church of Bor.

  • We have witness testimony showing that you have participated in the summoning of chaos-demons for your own dark purposes.
  • We have material evidence demonstrating that you failed to cooperate with an official member of the church inquisition.
  • We have material evidence linking you to the worship of the Abominations.
  • We have witness testimony suggesting that you have participated in the slaughter of innocent servants of the Justicefather in Heathton.

    The confessor asks whether the two plead guilty or innocent to the charges. Rannos pleads guilty to all but the last item, Whitefire shakes his head in defiance to all charges. Threst next asks the two if there is anyone who may bear false witness against them because of a grudge they may hold. Rannos can think of only a few, including Mother Superior Gleeza. Whitefire tries to cast a spell once the gag is taken off him to speak, but Onion beats Whitefire silly. Threst asks Rannos if he knows of any churchmen who may serve as council for he and Whitefire for the upcoming trial. Rannos names Brother Frankie, Sarissa Lin, and Sir Ostler Byrne.

    In Ludwig, the characters continue to discuss their next step. They are unclear as to even where their companions are held and how to find Archbishop Daas until an unfamiliar churchman arrives on a donkey at Granny Holdbean's. He is dressed in a very old style not seen since the fall of the Empire of Dawn. He introduces himself as Hadrock Justine. He is looking for Brother Frankie, Sarissa Lin, or Sir Ostler Byrne. Ostler is the only one available, so Hadrock Justine begins briefing him on Rannos and Whitefire's situation. He tells Ostler they are being held in the Holy City on charges of heresy. He shares a document with Ostler on the procedures of Bor's Inquisition and asks if he might join the adventurers on their journey. Ostler and the others refuse the old, cranky churchman's offer and so he vanishes mysteriously into the night with his mount.

    Odec 5th-Odec 8th
    Ostler makes some divinations to determine where his companions are being held. He also prays to Bor as to what the Justicefather wants him to do in this case of churchman vs. churchman. The Justicefather asks Ostler to consult the Prelate on the matter.

    The heroes travel South to the Holy City with no major events. Along the way, Ostler happens upon some pilgrims venturing to the Holy City for curative spells and forgiveness. Ostler hears their confession and performs two cure disease spells on the afflicted and they are very thankful.

    In their cell, Rannos and Whitefire are tortured in order to secure a confession. The confessor has Rannos beaten every hour on the hour to keep him in a weakened state and Whitefire looks on in pain and terror as his fingers are snapped off at the roots one by one. However, attempts to blame Mother Superior Gleeza or Angus McNasty backfire when the confessor brings in the Feaster fork Whitefire insisted on keeping from the raid of Heathton and performs a divination on it. Even when Rannos is emasculated, he does not cave into the inquisition and change his plea or name anyone else.

    Odec 9th
    The heroes arrive in the village of the Holy City around noontime. They check into a swanky tavern/hotel named the Golden Diamond. Angus gives the innkeeper Jerry the Golden 100 gold coins in order to keep ale flowing to all those in the tavern.

    The heroes try to make their way through the gates into the Holy City proper. Weapons of any sort are not allowed in the Holy City. Ostler and K'Leif pass through the main portal the Golden Door that stands as the entrance to the Cathedral of St. Guthlac. K'Leif feels a swell of lawfulness try to take hold of him, but he resists. Ostler and K'Leif give prayers and offerings to the Justicefather and then are led to Rannos and Whitefire's cells. There they find out what the two have been accused of and begin to make plans to put up a defense. They make arrangements to meet with the prosecutor before the proceeding at dawn the following day.

    Angus tries to make his way into the Holy City through the Gate of Pennance. This gate opens out into the vast gardens of the Holy City including the fabled Garden of Semengeth, the place where St. Hugo was betrayed by one of his own followers before he was captured and put to death. He is able to enter, but he is escorted by a monk named Bhrest. Angus does his best to shake the monk by being annoying and worshiping at a broom closet of the temple. Much to Angus' chagrin however, Bhrest is more than happy simply to have Angus praying and so she joins him in hopes of converting him to the true way of law. Angus makes the cardinal sin of lying in the Cathedral, and he is forcibly thrown out.

    His cursed shortsword does not allow Gabriel to enter the holy city. Eventually, a cannon priest is able to remove the weapon from Gabriel's person for a small fee. Gabriel then sells the unfortunate weapon to a collector in town for a hearty sum of gold emperors.

    During this time, Ragnar gets drunk on Angus' money with Scagnetti at the Golden Diamond.

    That night, after some carousing and case-making the party sleeps in separate rooms on the same floor of the Golden Diamond. Near morning, the quiet man attacks Ostler in his room. Ostler mouths the name Amien which breaks the quiet man's power. He throws off his helmet and demands to know how Ostler has found his name. With the silence broken, Ostler is able to summon help. The quiet man is beaten and he surrenders, curling up in a ball on the floor. The breastplate of St. Guthlac and his magical helmet are both removed from him. A dwarven paladin named Datin and a monk named Neli both arrive to take Amien into custody. The Manifesto of Bor's Law is found on Amien. This tome is found on many who oppose secular rule. It is writen by Hadrock Justine over 1000 years ago. The adventurers ask to meet with the watchmen and their superiors tomorrow morning regarding a threat against the Prelate. The watchmen reveal to Ostler that the prosecutor in this case is none other than Archbishop Daas.

    Odec 10th
    That morning, Ostler others go to the Cathedral of St. Guthlac to meet with Archbishop Daas who serves as prosecutor. Ostler sits and reveals the Breastplate of St. Guthlac, evoking discomfort from the Archbishop. Daas explains the charges to Ostler and reveals clearly where the evedence originates from. Daas warns Ostler that the knight will not get to the Prelate before he does following the trial. Daas reveals that he was the one who sent the ghost Hadrock Justine to lead them into a trap.

    The party meets with the paladins and monks of the watch and their immediate superiors regarding the threat against the Prelate. The watchmen have tried their best, but it seems that messages are not reaching the prelate. They are being intercepted on orders from High Inquisitor Ertoker, the chief of the inquisition. The party hatches a plan to prove Daas' guilt in the matter.

    At dark, the watchmen let the party into into the dungeon to speak with Amien. Angus disguises himself as Daas and Threast the Confessor listens invisibly to the conversation. Amien is surprised that Daas knows his name and gets suspicious. However, he knows little that can incriminate Daas because the order to kill Ostler was passed through a servant. However, Angus does get the name of Daas' servant who regularly communicated with the quiet man. The party takes the servant's name to a friend of the confessor's who is close to the Prelate. The friend, a Primus named Hadir insists on material proof. The heroes find the servant, Arien, and bring her into custody. Hadir hears the untruth in her voice and promises to go directly to the Prelate with this news.

    Odec 11th
    Ostler and the others arrive for the trial in the Square of St. Guthlac just outside the Golden Doors of the Cathedral. The paladin Datin warns Sir Ostler that although the judge Ertoker has been replaced, he has reason to believe that the replacement justice Harlocke is also in league with Archbishop Daas. He hands Ostler some notes of Daas that were secured from his cell that incriminate Daas, Ertoker, and Harlocke. As court is opened, the paladins make sure to lay on hands to heal Rannos as he makes his way to the stand. Ostler does a masterful job of turning guilt away from Rannos and Whitefire and placing full blame instead on Archbishop Daas and his chronies. Just as Harlocke is about to call Ostler into contempt and charge him as well, the Prelate shows up on his balcony and stops the proceeding. He calls Ostler up to his chamber, where the knight shares all he knows with the pontiff. Ostler and the Prelate step out onto the balcony and proclaim that Rannos, Whitefire, and Mother Superior Gleeza have all been wrongfully accused and should be freed immediately.

    Just then, the crowd hears shouts from the watchmen monks of "Spell! Get down! Spell!". Archbishop Daas appears in the crowd yelling "Traitor! You will die! You will all die! The word of Bor is law!". Spells start flying from the Archbishop pretty fast. Ragnar dies, Angus tries to take the reliquary of the Avatar but it is not on Daas. The Archbishop starts making his way toward the Prelate who Ostler shields from harm. A monk of Bor stuns the Archbishop long enough for Ostler's attack to burn the churchman and Rannos' blade to cut into his head. The Manifesto of Bor's Law is found on Daas, but there is no reliquary.

    The Prelate congratulates each in turn with a reward. All those killed, wounded, or maimed during the battle or by torture are healed. Each is offered 50,000 gold pieces as a reward. Whitefire begins to argue with the Prelate in order to get more for his losses due to Blacksword until the Prelate threatens to withdraw the offer entirely. Angus turns down the coin in favor of getting a letter of endorsement from the Prelate. A copy of that endorsement is also placed in the Imperial Library for safekeeping. Ostler is offered the position of head of the Inquisition. He accepts. The Prelate is pleased. On his way out of the diamond office of the Prelate, Ostler spots a book recently put on the Prelate's shelf. It is The Mannefesto of Bor's Law.