Session One Hundred and Fifty Summary (Graveyard of Empires: After the Fall)

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Session 150, August 30 2023

GildedGusset Docked.jpg

Introduction

We continue at 12:00PM on the 1st of Anurilden (00.000.08.29 on the Apocalypse Clock) with the party having come ashore at the docks of Shem after freeing the Gilded Gusset from the sandbar. The group has decided to take the surviving Shemmites with them aboard the Armada ship on the condition that they "become Montoan". Captain Chen is indifferent to this, seeing it as a fair exchange for the party driving off the undead that infested his ship. Almost everything is ready to set sail for Crescent Island, excepting the collection of supplies from the abandoned village. Will the former Shemmites and Armadans prove trustworthy? Can the Gilded Gusset make the trip to Feldmark without incident? What awaits the party on that island? Find out next time; or not.

Larry's Summary

While the Shemites, now Neo-Montoans, go to gather their valuables, Velkin follows them.

Some of the women stay with the children on the dock. 7 - 5 men and two women, and 2 sailors, follow along.

Captain Chen is taking his pipe out and makes himself comfortable on the dock.

Down on the beach is some driftwood, perhaps a plank. Thorfus looks for something about 4 x 4 perhaps an inch thick, to carve an anchor.

Peronelle sits on the dock to watch.

Druul strums some tunes.

Velkin follows the group of 9 along a well-worn path. Ajbit is leading the way.

The buildings are semi-circular around a well. A long house is collapsed from being burnt.

Ajbit talking to the sailors and tells of the creatures killing a few, then lined up the others and took into the jungle. They didn't seem to want to kill, just taking people. They killed the elders at the banyan tree. I haven't gone there, it's cursed, the whole village is cursed, it's terrible.

We do have some supplies. A larger building is still standing.

Velkin goes in. There are a few steps down. Storage for foodstuffs. Shelves, tables, baskets, and barrels. Ajbit pops open a few things to show the sailors. It might last a few weeks, plenty of food. Some of it is dried and will last longer. The sailors start tallying it.

Velkin goes to the cursed place to see the elders at the banyan tree.

At the edge of the buildings there are fields. Across the fields is the banyan tree. There are figures under the branches of the banyan tree. They do not seem to be moving.

Velkin crosses the field. Crops still growing but a lot is trampled.

The DVLs seem to have made an art installation from the elders. It looks like two figures sitting at a table with a feast. Not sure how many elders, but two chairs, a table, and the feast made of their bodies and two feasting. None of the bodies have been touched by predators, nor do they seem to be rotting quite yet.

Velkin does a circuit and kneels down to see various angles. High-backed chairs with armrests, a large table. Definitely more than ten bodies uses to make it.

It looks like they were heavily tortured prior to death. No signs or sounds of wildlife, even insects.

Lots of footprints, hoofprints, and signs of trampling.

They have all their fingers.

Nothing unusual is evident in the tree.

Velkin looks for eagle headed lion creature and doesn't see it.

Velkin heads back and they have started to take barrels, crates, and barrels in middle of village.

It looks like more than one trip's worth, but not enough to bring over the rest of the crew. At most 4 trips.

Velkin heads back to the dock and passes along to Druul what he found at the banyan tree.

Druul's playing fascinates the children. He plays discordant notes as Velkin speaks to him.

Druul delves into his studies of lore based on what Velkin told him about the figures at the art installation. It is disturbing, but he can't think of anything of significance.

Thorfus does quick work as the wood is easy to work.

The sailors and Shemites arrive at the docks with the first load of food. They think is it 4 to 5 months of food. Most of it will spoil before then. Maybe 30 days of food. (We know have 16 sailors, 15 Neo-Montoans, 12 in party - 42 individuals.) Mostly fresh vegetables and smoked meat.

Chen tells them to grab some of the food, but not all of it.

We argue to take it all and eat the fresh and try to preserve some of the fresh food.

The party, women with the two children and 30 days food are taken to the ship, then they head back to the docks.

Velkin stays behind and goes down the beach looking for birds or other animals. There are plenty of gulls diving for food.

Velkin finds a place to sit and tries to talk to some gulls.

A gull replies. Velkin tears off a piece of smoked meat and tosses it. It catches it before it hits the ground.

Velkin asks if he saw what happened over there. Uh, I don't feel comfortable talking to myself.

I'm gonna get some more fish and it leaves.

Velkin tosses out another piece of smoked meat and startles another gull talking to it. Velkin tosses another piece of meat.

Are you a ghost? Not really, I'm sneaky like a ghost. Are you from the ghost ship? I'm from the ghost ship, but I'm not a ghost. I'm from that ship over there. Not the ghost ship. So you're shipwrecked here off the ghost ship. Velkin asks it about the banyan tree. It doesn't know what Velkin is talking about.

Did you see some bony and barbed things take some people from here? No.

Did you like that meat? Yeah, it doesn't taste like ghost at all. The gull takes off.

The sailors return with enough crew to get all the food in one trip.

Chen has the mate find a place below for the Neo-Shemites.

Druul has followers in the two children.

Druul sets up on the forecastle, and starts to make shanties on how to sew up a sail. The kids pay close attention. By the third verse they start eyeing the sails. Druul gets some sailcloth and keeps singing as he works with the children making a basic sails. The lieutenant brings some sewing tools to help out. Don't loose anything.

Then shanties about knots and ropes. The knot song is from his childhood so he doesn't have to make it up.

Thorfus keeps working on carving the anchor.

Velkin tries to recuit a gull with promises of smoked meat to take up on the crow's nest. Why? All my family is here.

Ok for one more piece will you fly a circle over the village and tell me if you see anything moving bigger than a dog. I'll give you a whole slice. Over water or over land. Take a couple circles and tell me what you see.

It is back very soon. Velkin flips out half a slice. I saw some of the people are taking their food and piling in the middle of the village, there aren't as many as there used to be. Velkin flips him the other half.

Tell your friends if anyone is coming, the first one to report to us gets a full slice.

Velkin uses his telescope to find a shadow to step back to the ship.

They haul the last of the food, and there is more than they can do in one trip.

Velkin makes a pass through all the huts looking for remaining valuables. He looks for the clay pots from Montoa, or anything that might have been Kahlia's or anything else from Montoa.

Velkin checks the longhouse. Velkin happens upon a staircase cut into the ground. The top is chocked with what fell on top of it. He can move the rubble and debris enough to make it down the stairs.

Velkin sets the letter opener from the admiral's house in Gharamost so it is painfully obvious it is there.

Then he goes down the stairs.

There are shelves. One with a stick or staff, a locked strongbox, and 6 jars from Montoa, 4 of them slosh with liquid. It is a large strongbox 5 feet across.

Velkin grabs the staff and straps to his backpack. He fills his backpack with all six of the jars.

Using his continual light coin he sees that the walls are highly decorated. The top edge of the room has a lunar motif going around it. Below it are different images of figures. The styling is primitive. They are robed figures. Perhaps teachers or leaders directing the planting of fields and other activities. Perhaps the history of Shem.

Velkin looks for a shaman or a holy person and potential blood runes. Read languages is basically the history of Shem with battles and the leader perhaps on their deathbed appointing a dozen other figures in their place. No runes, all pictures.

Velkin picks the lock on the chest. There is a reassuring and most likely positive clicks.

Velkin then checks for traps and finds none.

Standing on the other side and holds his breath and opens it.

The bottom has loose coins, most is jewelry with precious stones.

Velkin drags the chest to the bottom of the landing. Velkin angles the mirror so he can see the shadows of the trees near the village and use his telescope to shadow step. But thinks better of it.

He closes the chest and locks it. Goes back up and shadow steps and finds Druul and Thorfus, we need to go back and take a boat with us, and pulls out the jug. He gives the jugs in the cabin and the stick to Kauri to investigate.

We ask for a ride back with the men and leave them at the dock. Thorfus, Druul, Renthark, and Velkin.

Velkin leads us to the chest, and shows us what we found. Hundreds of gold coins, some platinum, and 5 pieces of jewelry: silver necklace with red stones, wrought gold rind, silver circlet with a red gem, wrought gold bracelet, Silver facemask with green gems for the eyes, gold necklace with a purple gemstone.

We get the chest up the stairs and make a travois out of the remnants of the longhouse and cover it.

Velkin gives Druul a piece of paper and sketches the mural to give it to the captain, the important thing we found.

Velkin looks under the tables and shelves and taps the walls seeking a secret door.

We reach the dock about 3 pm and a couple of sailors are waiting for us at the longboat. They start to prep it when the see us.

They ask if we need help and we load it into the longboat.

When we get to the ship we climb up and the crew uses a pully to get the chest aboard.

Druul shows the Neo-Montoans below where they will be sleeping. Caspar follows along, drawn to the children. Druul encourages Caspar that life goes on. We're not bringing them with us, it's not safe. We have to find them safety. Hopefully an island that is safe.

Once the chest is aboard, we move it to our cabin.

Chen watches us carrying the chest to the forecastle and get it in with Kauri and Lambertus.

Chen knocks and says, we're going to cast off soon and get away from the shallows before dark. All finished on shore?

'Yes' "One thing, just one more try on this, you're sure you want to go to Feldmark?" Yes.

Druul mentions that we're looking for safety. Are there any islands on the way? If you're not dead set on Feldmark and just Crescent Isle, on the North end is the dwarven settlement of Dun Khel.

You can get to Feldmark by crossing the island. Dun Khel will be reached first. There is a little bay near the Khel and drop off the refugees, and then you could sail on to Feldmark? Yes.

Druul a quick question for you. Who would you call your admiral? My admiral? Krungma with the slave market.

In Armada there is something about taking your own ship. I would be proud to be your captain. I would train the group to get us where we need to go. I can see this needing to happen.

This captain seems kind of weak minded, so I think we can take the ship if we have to.

We can simply land them on the island with the survivors and just sail away when they're on land.

Kauri looks at all the items. There is no transpatial energy and no glow from any of the items.

Thorfus can probably get the anchor done tonight. Thorfus locates Caspar and gives him 25 platinum to make a holy symbol of Baldric Evenkeel for Lambertus. Caspar will need some room to work.

Velkin suggests giving the captain 100 gold pieces so he gets something and to buy his silence. Druul suggests waiting to do that if the opportunity arises.

Caspar explains that he's skilled in gem and jewelry work and Druul mentions he can identify any gems or jewels he has for a percentage. The captain offers to let Caspar to work on the foredeck.

We have passed the sandbars and are in open waters heading to the South.

The rest of the day is uneventful.

While setting up a spot to work, Caspar gives some estimates of value. The circlet maybe 4,000 gold, two necklaces and facemask 2,000 each, bracelet and ring about 1,000 each. Total of 12,000 gp plus the coins. Almost 1,500 in coin with value of platinum.

Velkin suggests that Peronelle gets a large share of the treasure.

Druul wants to check to see if there is an empty small crate to put in the forecastle. Druul works on it for the first night. He sprinkles some dirt from Lungmold in the bottom of the crate. He will play and see if the map is updated. Crate to grow maps, and herbs for potions.

Thorfus finished up the wooden anchor. Caspar just gets started and will have it done mid-day tomorrow.

Kauri, Velkin, Lambertus, and Ithirialma all help with the nanocarbon book and see if we can see a pattern with the runes from the wreck of the station.

Thorfus goes to Lambertus and says you may have a crisis of faith but someone still believes in you. So I'll trade you this symbol I made of Baldric's symbol for the one of Lysander he has. Thorfus encourages Lambertus to make amends with Baldric, just in case.

Thorfus takes the symbol of Lysander and gives it to a member of the crew. The rest of the crew is envious of the one to get the symbol.

Druul and Ithirialma take watch on the forecastle and some of the sailors are keeping watch too.

Ithirialma catches site of something and tugs at Druul's sleeve and points, there is a ship out there on the same heading as ours. It has a glowing aura and has tattered sails.

Ithirialma says, that doesn't look normal does it?

Druul has heard of ghost ships and this seems to be obvious. Most reports of them have been on the West side or Southwest of Curmidden and between it and Agmar's Folly. There are tales of these ships attacking and sinking Armadan ships. Most of the tales says they don't leave any survivors.

The sailors on watch have caught site of it and awakened the captain.

Are we under attack? Perhaps. Dowse the lights, trim the sails, and go slow. Do what this fellow says and dowse the lights and make ready.

Down below we hear the running around.

Druul wakes the party.

Thorfus runs on deck and uses his spyglass to look at the ship. It isn't that far off. A ship with a ghostly glow and tattered sails, and the crew is skeletal. The captain at the wheel is looking in our direction. Also skeletal. Can't tell if his is smiling or if that is just his face. They are busy trimming their sails. Unlike our ship, that one has cannons and we see that the portholes on the lower deck has three cannons on our side.

Both on same take, but far enough ahead it doesn't have a firing angle.

Captain takes the wheel and has hit lieutenant watch with his spyglass and call out any changes.

Philomanthraxus comes on deck and says it's dark so maybe I can go deal with it without anyone knowing what it is.

Velkin asks Druul what the range is of cannons. They are in range now, but do not have an angle.

Lambertus points out it isn't the same as the one the former party met on the back of a whale which it and the crew were the disease form of undead.

Control Weather is a blood magic spell. Velkin has Kauri cast blood magic fly and then cast control weather using Velkin's blood. Velkin will then fly up with the scepter and heal.

Kauri creates high winds increasing our speed 50%.

Just as Velkin comes back the ghost ship dives down below the waves and disappears.

Velkin flies over the ship to get some altitude to see off into the distance. Not much to see at night. Curmidden off to port side.