Corsairs of the Caras Shallows

Face to face with Ziva

All stories are true, and this one even happened.
Dear Crazy Uncle Eddy,
The current status of me phylactery as it were is very much in question. The integrity of said phylactery might not survive another one of me trips back to the island as an elemental escorts me body. Vondra be very worried. TK3 be in the same boat as I am. He attributes his to valiance and saving the life o’others. Mine stems more from the fact that mages be a blight upon us all. Anyways, mages be fookers, and Ziva be a problem. Regretfully, two of Darrow’s ships have not been heard from. We have good reason to suspect that it be due to the evil See Witch Ziva that be sinkin Darrow’s vessels. Since he thinks of all us like his sons Darrow expressed his worry with pacing and the cold sweats. Since Darrow already lost two warships to Solo in exchange for Francis as a captive exchange, our ships were at a premium. We were starting to gain the upper hand in the naval vessal balance in the Caras Shallows. Two more ships resting at the bottom does not bode well for dear Darrow and our cause. Unsure of what we might encounter, I joined Guen and a number of others to investigate the approximate last know location of the lost ships.
I drank one of the smart kids water breathing potion, and tied a rope around my waist. I cannot remember for certain but I think it was Cornelius that joined me armed with potions. In case there be monsters of the deep waiting to bring me to my doom, we worked out an elaborate communication system through rope tugs and such. If the rope grew slack, they reel up the line, and the end be frayed they are all to drink in my honor. I will tug three times if I was hungry, two if they should pull me back with ferocity, and four for a drink. Down to the sea floor I swam armed with fishing spears and knives. Without too much searching I did locate the hull of one of our ships. When inspecting the carapace of the ships I found two good sized holes below water line on both the port and starboard sides of the ship. We learned all we could and then swam back up to the surface to relay my newly found knowledge back to our group.

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Before we made it back the surface the our trouble was upon us. Quickly we spread the word to all aboard to protect the hull under the waterline at all costs and to prep materials for fixing hull holes. Our anxiety was not in vain, as before too long, a large mass could be seen moving toward our vessel just under the surface. We opened fire, and attacked all we could. The two monsters looked to be built like manta rays. Unlike manta rays, they two protruding husks to bore through our hull and they began spinning our ship slowly. We were no longer in control of our ship, and we were unable to deter the monsters ingaged controlling our current destiny. If that wasn’t enough, a solid fog rolled in and our visibility dropped to five feet. I sucked down a flying potion, and a blunderbluss poiton expecting the worst. Well, in this case the worst was dargon breath of lightning shocking most of us. I charged the dragon on the stern and other charged a dragon on the bow. The fookin worm kept moving back out of reach into the fog escaping my attacks. The battle seemed to be for naught, as our attacks were never going to ring with success. None other than Ziva presented herself mid deck. Despite my rage, I was able to hold myself back as the See Witch tossed her demands at us like a pile of shit. She howled at us to take the “sight oath” and join her crew or the ship will sink to its watery grave. Luck be damned as it is deal with them now or deal with them later under the command of Ziva, a Keltesarian slave ship appeared on the horizon. Drooling with anticipation, Ziva figured that the Keltesarian haul was worth more than us at the time, so she called off one of her worm minions to join her and deal with the Keltesarians. I wish them both to fookin perish. We took the opportunity to concentrate on the remaining dragon. Eventually we did put a hurting on the beast. Guen was bursting and double bursting, Cornelious was figuring stuff out, and Miree Cylus was “axing it questions”. With the fog and lighting, the whole battle was very surreeal, it was even like Guen was having an out of body experience. With little life left, the beast grabbed the Guen who was close to death and dove into the water. With Channel Vigor, Haste, Fly, Waterbreathing, Enlarge Person, and a Blunderbuss potion all running, I cast aside my hesitations and dove into the water in chase. The foul sea beast clenched his jaw rendering Guen unconscious and released her lifeless body mid descent. I sped past her limp body to slay the beast. Alas I cannot claim to have killed the monster in revenge, instead he died of Natural Causes. On my ascent back to the surface I found guen and swam for the surface. The crew was a bit disheartened because they thought she was going to die as she was unconscious and fading fast. Shame on them to forget the beautiful powers of Hanseath. I called upon Hanseath and the powers of hops and barley. Hanseath smiled upon the Favored Soul, and found her worthy to drink again. As Ziva was engaged with the fookin Keltasarian casters, we knew better than to stick around as spectators. Tonight we drink the sweet nectar of hops and barley in thanks for Hanseath allowing us to escape from Ziva’s grasp.
-Rontor

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Watt are you doing with those souls?

Aurelia, Mitch, Francisco, Thomas, Loren

The group departed for Admiral Watts secondary island stronghold/ warforged factory. We landed on the far side of the small, heavily jungled island, only to be promptly ambushed by Watts men. After taking a bit of a beating, we finally dispatched the group and made our way to our destination. Mitch and Francisco headed to the factory to scope it out and find out what was going on inside the island. They discovered a mostly empty warehouse, with the exception of 6 dentist-esque style tables and a giant telescope type device connected to a large crystal. Upon observation, Mitch and Fransisco discovered that Watts’ men were using the crystal to project their souls into a warforged body. With no Admiral Watt to be seen, the two men sneaked back to where the rest of the group were hiding.
Through much discussion, the group decided on ambushing the factory from above. They drilled a hole right above the soul transmitter and dropped a necklace of fireballs down onto the unaware below. After a few explosions, Loren warped the wood ceiling to allow the skylights to come crashing down onto the whole operation.
Once the ceiling was mostly gone, Aurelia launched glitterdust down onto where we suspected Watt to be, forcing him to change from invisible to outlined in glitter. Loren then created an ice slide, allowing most of the group to slide down into the building. They then surrounded Watt, while Aurelia aimed fire at the men starting to stand up from the crash of glass and wood.
Watt took quite a beating, but then used black fire and divine quell to prevent any divine magic/abilities from being used. After putting up a fight, Watt finally exploded…literally… and left negative energy, affecting the group.

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Stop Solo!

Mission: Stop Solo!
Game Day: Tuesday 15 July 2014 – AM Game

Thaddeus
Ollie
Francisco

We began by stopping by Mackerel Jacks to gather intelligence about Captain Solo’s newly established encampment at the base of the West Caras Mountains and also the island he is rumored to be stashing treasures on. During our activities at Mackerel Jacks Thaddeus’s monkey discovered a murdered man in a back alley. The man was dressed as a crew member of Pirate Lord Halquinnor Watt and had died from a slit throat. This is the first the first recorded murder on Mackerel Jacks since its establishment many years ago.

Information was sparse on MJs, no new leads. We decided to travel to Solo’s new encampment to investigate its purpose ourselves. During a reconnaissance mission into the encampment I observed morlocks, orcs, half-orcs, lizard folk, and humans working in the service of Lord Solo. The morlocks’ eyes were most peculiar: they bulged and were of milky white color. The encampment consisted of about twelve well guarded buildings. I was unable to gain entry into any of them. The encampment itself is oval shaped. One side of the oval sits against a sheer cliff face and the other fortified with palisades.

I decided to investigate two docked ships just outside of the encampment after determining I wouldn’t be able to gain access to any of the buildings. That’s where trouble began. As I invisibly snuck up a ship ramp I was bumped and push into the water by a crew member. I do not remember much after falling into the water. Bullets slammed into my neck and chest. I faded from consciousness. I awoke. The last thing I remember seeing was a pair of radiant crimson eyes.
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I was captured by Solo and yet I live. I was turned into a statue of stone. Darrow traded two war ships for my release. Vondra says I must live for I am needed to unite the Caras Shallows under Darrow. I trust them. I trust in this crew. Solo has taken a piece of my foot. Solo must die.

Ollie, Thaddeus and I made our way to Solo’s rumored treasure island (we lost our resolve to continue the encampment thread). We found <self>’s ship docked at the island, but no sign of him. On this island we discovered an onyx mine guarded by a small group of undead. Clearing the undead nearly claimed our lives. We quickly explored the entrance of the mine, took samples of onyx. We left the island with <self>’s ship.

-Francisco

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Watt's Giant Black Shaft
Friday Morning

Thadius, Cornelius, Rontor, and Salty Pete set out to find Watt and further investigate the mysterious crater in the island of Craytor. What should have been a quick flight on a gnomish hang glider turned into a four hour death march through the jungle because a certain dwarf was too scared to fly. Truth be told, it took me a four hour session with my therapist to finally accept the reality, that it was most certainly not a four hour death march through the jungle, but a 30 minute stroll through some trees and shrubs. I was also able to admit that the hangliding experiment is just that, and experiment, and the test pilots have been lucky to have not been seriously injured so far. All for the sake of science right?

At the crater, they discovered only a small watch of 6 men had been posted. The guards were quickly overcome and four were convinced to join the Gnomish Armada, or, if you prefer, the Great Nautical Oceanic Maritime Explores. T, C, R, and SP began to investigate the the crater which was actually the ruins of an old Devourer temple. After Cornelius crafted bracelets that protected them from the negative juju inside the temple, they were about to continue exploring. They found that the temple was build around a large black crystal pillar with faintly throbbing veins of energy pulsing throughout. It was then that they were attacked and noticed that every time they were dealt damage, the crystal would absorb their life energy. Once the battle was done, they were able to take a closer look and figured that the crystal was made to send souls to any point, even incredibly long distances.

Knowing that this could only be used for evil, Thadius and Cornelius unanimously agreed with each other that the pillar should be exploded. This created thousands of crystal shards, each holding energy from ancient souls. The group decided that the crystals should be taken back to Daro’s Island where a plan could be created to release the energy before if fell into the hands of someone not willing to use it to further the Gnomish cause.

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Issac no be getting me treasure
Friday Morning

We meet up with Issac and discover that there is an Island with a lot of treasure that he would like for us to visit. In our talks we discover that the island has a magical circle against evil surrounding it. Our paladin, TKW, creates and effect that allows us to all enter the docking area. We dock and are immediately attacked by golems. We start to jump back onto the ship with we realize that the golems are killing our crew members. Grams hits one of the golems and jumps into the water to make the golem follow her off the boat. The creature jumps off the boat after Grams swinging at her, dealing her a mighty blow. Guen hearing Gram’s cries casts water walking on herself and jumps off the side of the boat. About half way down Guen realizes that she doesn’t have feather fall and plummets to the water landing on it as if it were solid ground. (so much for being a hero again)

The ship is ordered to disembark as soon as we get all of the monsters to follow us off the boat. We also decided as soon as we weren’t making things awesome enough, we all decided to end up on the wrong side of the boat. Barely missing being squished, we head for the docks on foot. Sebastian talks Grams into fleeing with the rest of us. Grams retreats in her Grams-like style, as she flies into the air doing flips and cackling. Mitch and Guen end up in the bank and contemplate how much gold and cooper each can carry. Guen heals Mitch and realizes that they are the only two members that have made it to the bank. I try to catch up to Grams when I hear Mitch yell tht he needs my silver tongue. I shout to Grams to come join me in the bank. She makes it into the bank vault just in time as the door is closed and locked by the few remaining survivors of this town.
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It is at this time that we realize that Grams’s remove odor smell has warn off. As we all clutter on one side of the vault and leave Grams to the other side, we settle down for a rest, listening to the stories of the survivors. They tell us that they are trapped inside the vault and when they try to leave they are attacked by the coral monsters. They say that a few months ago a stranger moved in and set up protection ruins around the town. He then started to abduct criminals. When he ran out of criminals he began to prey on children and helpless adults. He was turning them into the coral monsters. By the time the town realized what was happening, they only could hide. We were the first travelers to get through the barrier. We decide that we really need to help free these people.

The next morning we sneak out the secret door into a room filled with coral creatures and a bearded man. Mtch and TKW attack the first monster. Grams attempts awesomeness, as I enter the center of the room and see the bearded man standing there. I turn and stun him with my booty rocking. TKW takes out one coral monster, while Grams makes an epic move by surrounding the stunned bearded man in a cloud kill. As our Paladin continues to destroy the corals, the rest of the group continues to contribute in our special way. The rogue runs up to one of the monsters swings with all his might, and misses. Grams starts playing with her cloud kill, while I burst all over my team members giving them life.
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We push the bearded man into the corner. Realizing that he is trapped the coward flees freeing the curse on the town. We find another secret passage by following the souls that came out of the coral monsters. Our rogue finds a treasure room where I swim in the gold and adorn my body with jewels. We leave the magic barrier up so that President Cap’n Issac can’t go onto the island. We take the treasure and inform Issac that we saved the people but were unable to secure any treasure. Issac was okay with this, and offered us his services at a later date. We then traveled to Mackerel Jacks. We found a rumor that Issac is an elf posing as a human, that Hellian has two sites that have ruins, and that he is an old and skilled elf.

The esteemed Issac on the left, with his trusted sidekick, Ninjadick on the right:
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Ziva's Sea of Monsters
Friday Afternoon Game

DM: David
Group: Signet, Francis, Loren, and Aurelia

Our Mission was to deal a blow to Ziva and disrupt her pearl farming operations. Due to the natural coral reef surrounding the island we were dropped off a ways and had to row ourselves in. Everything was fine until we spotted ripples in the water heading our way.

Two sea ogres broke the surface of the water and attacked. Frank aka “Riptide” swam behind the first ogre to assist Francis. With some carefully places fly spells, the first ogre went down quickly. Two of our comrades were about to be grappled but I was able to prevent them. Francis wasn’t as lucky as the first, the second ogre grabbed him and was about to use him as a weapon. I chimed in with a quick incantation so instead he flew 40 ft. backwards. After a quick recover, we dispatched the last one. We healed and continued forward.

We finally made it to the coral area and sent Frank to scout. He returned and informed us that there were octopi gathering the pearls while several sea creatures with extra planar qualities patrolled the area. Frank also spotted Ziva’s vessels within the harbor which made us questioned how they got through the reef. Not wanting to bring attention to us, I chanted spells of water breathing and slipstream to make our journey under the water easier.

After traveling half-way we came across a huge prehistoric crocodile. It had a daunting presence but we stuck with our Frank-n-Francis plan. This creature had the extra-planar qualities. Unfortunately, I made a tasty snack and ended up in his mouth. By the grace of the waters and sheer will, I managed to survive the ordeal and was rescued. Seeing all blood around us, we decided to leave and avoid any potential dangers.

Our last fight, we came across the source of the pearl farm. In the center of an alcove sat a huge octopus radiating blue light with yellow stripes surrounded by three sea drakes. All four exuded extra-planar characteristics. We observed the octopi hand over their sack of pearls they collected to the huge one.
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The battle started with all four of them sending electrical attacks at us. Francis darted out to the first drake while I quickly summon a protection against those attacks on our group. The first drake was quickly dispatched with the Frank-n-Francis combo. Aurelia attacked from far with her bow while Signet used her Kahuna powers to call the red tide and support her party. The huge octopus created an ink cloud to defend itself. The skirmish went well until Swabin Hawkins showed up. When we took down the second drake, he stepped back into the ink cloud and disappeared with the huge creature and all the pearls.

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Wat ???

So here I be, ready for my next adventure. The cap’n says where ye going? Over the shouts in the tavern I hear not what he says and say….. What? And that’s how I be shooting out of a cannon today.
Cornelius starts relaying orders for all of us to hop into his freshly made cannon so that we be blastin to where we gettin to. I hang onto my fancy fly potion, just because Cornelius seems like he knows what he be saying, but the Gods sometimes find it amusing to be messin’ with the plans. I see fellow adventures fallin’ from the skies. I uncork my potion and save myself the fate of falling.
As we brush off the branches from some of our crew members we realize that there be two ships at port.
We send off the rogue for more information. A cheeky fellow who keeps yelling at us that he’s not that kind of rogue. We force some potions down his throat, send some idle threats in his direction and send him on his way.
With his return we discover that they be holding a prisoner by the name of Bryant. We see our cheeky rogue returning with the struggling young lass who is getting the upper hand on him. As we stand there and laugh at his undoing we decide to help him. We discover that she is bein held by Cap’n Wat as a prisoner. We also discover that be his ship. She explains to us how fearful he is for his life and that he is always running around invisible. We are just able to attain this information when a group from the ship come to kill us. We take on an epic adversary with a cannon for a hand. In the midst of our battle Cap’n Wat tries to come in and take us out. We defeat his men and almost take him. He runs like the little cod fish that he is when he realizes that he is out classed. In the process we did have one of our companions fall in battle. Lets all raise our rum and salute Sir Thomas for his bravery on taking a cannon straight to the face.

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Thadius and the Great Gnome Rescue

Thadius and Francis decided they needed to head back to Solo’s secret encampment and figure out just what was going on. After spending the night and observing the fort, they found a secret cave in the cliff wall. Sneaking in, they discovered several stone statues and a basilisk. They made quick work of the basilisk and the one guard in the room. From there they found a secret passage that led to a secret tunnel that had secret traps. This was only a problem for those taller than Thadius. After the trapped tunnel, the group found a room with a series of giant letters on the floor. After looking things over for a bit, the solution was pretty obvious, follow the path that spelled SOLOSOLOSOLO. That was of course not correct. They then decided to go with the ”rely on dumb luck and hope to jump out of the way” approach. About ¾ the way through they figured out the path spelled GRUMSH.
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The next room had a 60ft chasm with giant gears below, a ceiling covered in cobwebs, and a on the far wall. Again, the group chose wrong. The door was a trap that led to nothing. Turns out there was a hidden path and some crazy reverse gravity on the ceiling. That led to a door with a ring of 5 keys. One of the keys had a slight S pattern in the teeth, which seemed like the obvious choice. Again, the group chose wrong. Eventually, after losing several weapons, they got passed the door.
Inside they found 15 gnomes chained to desks creating gunpowder, guns, and other awesome gnome things. Because gnomes are amazing, they had managed to create a secret escape box. They piled most of the gunpowder under the metal box, left a powder trail to the rest, and set it off when the giant guard came rumbling in. The box shot out of the side of the mountain and sailed several miles in the air, and landed in the ocean. As gnome luck would have it, they were within sight of their ship.
Loren and Gwen were there too.

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No more Solo
Thursday evnin

Dear Crazy Uncle Eddy,
Despite my nervousness and trepidation, we drink in victory for Hanseath smiled upon me greatly, the fates however did not. With knuckles, Aurealia, Lauren, Salty Pete, Myree Cyless, Ziggy the big Kahuna, and I set out for Mackral Jack’s. Without delay I bought masterwork thieves tools for knuckles. Despite his recent disabling failures, he seemed to think the mechanical bonus was not needed. I convinced him otherwise. I had spent all my previous money on weapons to outfit arm the slaves in our rebellion against the Keltasarian slavers. When I went rooting for my money purse I found all the money from the Keltasarian slavers, which I was able to pull gold from.

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Hanseath be smiling upon us like a dwarf be smiling upon an ale. When we pulled into port, we did find the ship of the nefarious Solo. With a foolproof plan in place, we stormed Solo’s ship. Knuckles was charged with locking hatch doors. Lauren, Aurelia, and the Ziggy were charged with throwing others off the boat and keeping Solo’s sailors from boarding from the dock. Myree, the salty pete and I waited. Salty Pete was going to magically transport us to Solo’s cabin. Pete suddenly got nervous and took us to the ship fast than anticipated. In a flash, me stomach be queasy and me head be spinnin. We met a calm Solo sitting at his desk.
The gruff Solo shouted at us, “What be this nonsense!”
Da Salty Pete shouted back with raised eyebrows and a shrug, “The be what we be calling a mutiny.”

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Solo fired his mechanical cannon at the three of us, and his chair shot up through the ceiling to his deck. Alarm bells be ringing, and da salty Pete cast a spell on the tree of us. I followed the Myree Cyless out on deck to engage da pirates in battle. We found da Ziggy, Lauren, and Aurealia already fighting the sailors. Myree and I converged on Solo and found him a more than formidable match. I not be sure where the knuckles be, maybe he was waylaid in town. I finally injured Solo enough that he be falling to the floor. Solo’s right hand Troll shaman turned tail and run, but the hated giant tried to claim the millennium Pelican as his ship. The giant killed me dead on the deck. Me mates told me that me body filled with hatred against the giant slayed him in return.
We returned with the millennium pelican and an unconscious Solo to Darrow. A babba yaga hut met us at Darrow’s island demanding a Hut Bounty for Solo. Democratically we agreed Solo should be subject to a trail and execution. Although I did succumb to mortal wounds again, Solo did die by Natural Causes no less. Drinks to you dear uncle as the seas be safer than before,
Rontor

In a related note, there has been a BOLO issued for the Troll Shaman Bakka
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That Girl is Poison...
Thursday Afternoon

DM: David

The group set out on a fact finding mission. The mission was to set off for Mackerel Jack’s to gather information on Ziva. The group consisted of Salty Pete, Gramzy, Cornelious, Oli, and Signet. The group headed to the Missing Scales and to Black Garter, but with little result. On the way through town they encountered Captain Tobias ‘Balloon Swallower’, who appeared to be beating the town at liar’s dice. As the rest of the day had been a bust the group sat down for some high stakes gambling, little did they know how high stakes it would be. The game quickly escalated, and before they knew it Capt Tobias was ‘all in’ on one round of liar’s dice. Captain Tobias called lair, and lost his ship….the Twilight Runner. The group was a little suspicious of their new acquisition, however it was a fine vessel so to the seas it went.

Salty Pete was promoted to Captain and the Twilight was renamed the ‘Ships and Dip’. On day two of sailing the skies became stormy. The seas parted revealing a huge shark…..and the old tale of Fin Fin – the ghost shark was quickly remembered. The tale states that Fin Fin was finally killed by a captain ages ago, and to this day he haunts who ever serves as captain of the Blood Dawn every evening. The battle was fierce, however the crew managed to fight off Fin Fin and set off immediately to bring revenge to Captain Tobias for his evil ploy. The group also remembered that the legend states that there any piece of the harpoon that originally speared the beast offers protection against the curse….and Captain Tobias just happened to have a wooden ring.

The group was torn on how to enact their revenge on Captain Tobias. They were currently residing on Mackerel Jack’s Island, which demands no attempts on the Captain’s life. The group settled on a Hail-Mary attempt at fixing Gramzy up with a disguise as well as an aroma cancelling spell and sending her in to seduce the Captain in order to capture him and get his protection ring. Gramzy managed to get a few Squid ink beers into the captain and take him back to enact the plan. The team managed to slip off the ring and place the Captain back on the Blood Dawn just in time to promote him back to Captain, without a wooden ring on his finger…….and Fin Fin took care of the rest.

The Captain Salty Pete has control of the Ships and Dip and wears a wooden ring for the rest of this life.

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