There is an Indian food order at the beginning of these notes. Mmmm, naan. We head up north to check out the golden area and sell the horses on the way. We sell the horses in the elven town of Riflian to some merchants. I think I fell asleep around this point. All I have written is “something about slaves, ogres and horses.” Sorry, I was super tired! Please fill in what you remember!
We continue north by mudlark to Threshold, the closest city to the golden area. For some reason, the Threshold leaders have decided that almost all weapons must be confiscated upon entering the city. This does not include swords or rods. Scott suggests the sword lobby is powerful here; I think maybe they have a fixation on phallic weaponry. The strange weapon rules don’t even hinder later fighting, so I’m not sure what the whole point is. We find out that Golthar, his lady friend and some rat-faced dude are hanging out in the city on Folger’s Isle. Unfortunately, it is not a magical island of coffee, as I fall asleep again later in this session. Ellie (Elly? Please insert correct spelling, Derek) rescues some old lady who tells us that Goltharis hanging out is a place with two crossed swords. When we find the place, we explore inside and are jumped by a bunch of giant spiders. I pass out around round 3 and wake up to discover I have become a meat shield. Good thing con is a star warlock’s main stat! After we spot the rat faced dude, Talia follows him and then leads us to his location. We are then attacked by Golthar et al. Yay, we kill him! Also, we find out that the old lady set us up. Bitch.
Leaving town, we head north to the Foam Fire Valley, home to a cadre of violent gnolls. We come across a giant mound, populated by zombies and heads on pikes. Too bad no one had a shotgun! The gnolls get kind of mad that we were traipsing around on their sacred burial ground and chase after us. There are a lot of them. A whole lot. Luckily, we only have to fight one group and outrun the rest in the mountains. We follow a path to a walled area and some gates. A batquito sucks Dyne’s face off as we attempt to enter. There are some animated statues on the inside, but they back down when we show them the needle and thread.
Beyond the gate is a valley filled with ruins. While searching the ruins we come across some dead bodies and are accosted by some stocky human-ish dudes on raptor (foot-pad lizards, whatever) steeds. They claim the dead dudes were killed by the “mutts,” a dog-headed people. The stocky people are called Traldarans. They take us to their leader, Yuri Bencow in their city of Hronkin. He tells us that the mutts are a race called Hutaakans who once enslaved the Traldarans. They are now summoning undead hordes out of some temple to attack the Traldar villagers. They ask us to help disrupt a Hutaakan ritual the next morning. During the night we kill some zombies for them, since they are all pansies and are afraid of the dark.
The next morning, we head out for some killins. At a nearby shrine, we find some Hutaakans being attacked by zombies. We try to kill only the zombies so we can get some info out of the Hutaakans, but they attack us first (no, really, they do!) and we are forced to retaliate. One is kept alive for questioning. Next, Bencowasks us to go to the Singing Pool and get some Shining Water that can be used to cleanse the temple and clear out the zombies. We get to borrow raptor steeds to travel there and it is awesome (mine is called Sprinkles and Sarah names hers Jeff Golblum).
When we get back we question the dogface we’d captured at the ritual. His name is Baqateq and he tells us that the Hutaakan stronghold is Bixata, to the west. Here’s where we come up with the plan to infiltrate the dogfaces and learn their side of the story (as well as perhaps get more money and info on the zombie infestation). We arrange to fake a break-out for Baqateq. Flor distracts (or scares off) the guards by flirting with them, to the dismay of his out-of-game wife Sarah (Talia). When we arrive at dogface central, we learn that they thing the Traldarans are sending out the zombies and want us to protect them while they undertake a ritual to banish the horde. The ritual has to be done in the zombie infested temple of Flar/Pflährr, the dogface god. They also tell us about Qaterba/Kqa’tehrbaaah/Qdoba, some hideous beast who guards the temple and has recently escaped.
Before we go to the temple, we first have to visit the Vault of the Elders and retrieve a book with the instructions on how to perform the ritual (and of course, kill the golem guardians hanging out there). After that, we escort high dogface priestess Kaforedz and some lesser priestesses to the temple to perform the ritual. We defend them from the usual zombies and a giant four armed skeleton of DOOM. Several of us take souvenirs from the body to make accessories. The party decides to stay and loot the temple while the priestesses make their way back (this is the beginning of the fuck-uppery that characterizes the rest of this adventure). We discover a statue that is concealing a door, but we can’t get the door open without a key.
When we are leaving the temple we find that the Traldarans have arrived and have killed all the dogface priestesses. Have they never heard of taking prisoners? Or mercy? Or not being assholes? Seriously guys, not cool. We go along with them back to town anyway and ask around about the hidden room. Turns out Qdoba probably has the key. Also, some shady character has been hanging around town, but Bencow is too scared to tell us about who he is or what he’s doing there. This will come back to bite us later. We also visit the dogface town to get more Qdoba info. Unsurprisingly, they kind of hate us now. We also find out that the needle and thread are actually some sort of way to lead home Hutaakans from outside the valley. Lame.
The only thing to do now is set ourselves up as Qdoba bait to get that key. He doesn’t attack the party when we camp outside that night, but we do find a trail of slime the next morning that leads to the underground Qdoba hangout. Elhaym takes ongoing acid damage for at least 10 rounds, taking more damage from this than from the entire rest of the fight. We find a silver bar in the nasty tentacley remains of Qdoba, which we discern is the key to the room. Everyone but Flor takes teeth from Qdoba as a souvenir.
After resting for a night Hutaakan-side, we head to the temple for some lootz. Except when we arrive there some dude has taken almost all the treasure! Our treasure! We killed goddamn QDOBA for this treasure and the shady dude just took it! He disappears when he sees us, leaving some jeweled flowers. He’ll totally get his comeuppance later. Lots and lots of delicious comeuppance. We return to the dogface dudes and tell them about the treasure thief and give them the silver bar. Then we head off to Hronkin to get the info on the thief. Unfortunately for us, it seems the Hutaakans resurrected their dead priestesses as zombies who then attacked the Traldarans, who blame us for the whole thing. They don’t really feel like discussing the matter, at least, not with words. While running away, we encounter a group of Hutaakans, who accuse us of stealing their treasure. Seriously? Didn’t we just tell them some shady mofo took it? I suppose that is a convenient excuse… and I suppose we would have taken it if he hadn’t… okay, they’ve got us on this one. Anyway, the only way they won’t kill us is if we help them kill the Traldarans. Head aslpodey. At this point, the party decides to let them kill each other without our help and runs off.