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Mar 28 2013

Chronicles of Netheril, March 23rd, 2013

Defending Spellgard – Initial Invasion

The Netherese threat was approaching and we had to command our troops in the defence of Spellgard. With the help of the large crystal ball on our ship, we were able to direct our troops regardless of their locations; and with no delay in the delivery of our orders.

During our preparations for the invasion, we had sent out the Harpers lay traps and ambushes in the roads leading to Spellgard. Now that the Netherese ground-based invasion force was close we ordered the Harpers to spring the traps and ambushes to harry, confuse and disorient them.

As the various Netherese ground and air troops got closer they ran into the snow storm Dirty Pig had created around the city. This combined with the effort of the Harpers caused massive disarray in the enemy formations and weakened their numbers quite a bit.

When the enemy reached the side gate we directed the Elven archers and Marsh Drover magicians we had stationed there to hold them at bay until Dirty Pig could raise the land. To counter this move the Netherese sent an aerial company to attack the newly created mote. But the Eladrin soldiers that we had also stationed there, backed up by Eramus’ giant spider and Dirty Pig’s Jade Macetail Behemoth, were successful in beating them back.

The main entrance came under siege, but Voulge conjured a Wall of Force to reinforce the gate and help hold back the attack.

Having successfully defended the two principal entry points, the enemy troops began probing the perimeter wall to find weak points they could exploit. Because we had positioned our own troops around the entire perimeter we were able to repel these exploratory sorties by the Netherese troops.

Through the use of portals, some of the Netherese forces were able to bypass our defences and attack key points throughout the city. A company of Marsh Drovers successfully defended the Monastery of the Precipice; while companies made up of combined forces of Marsh Drovers, War Wizards and Purple Dragon Knights defended both the Scepter Tower and the Broken Tower.

Another group of Netherese troop had portaled directly into the city centre where our reserve troops were stationed. They were doomed the moment they stepped out of the portal. Since we were hovering above, we blasted the enemy force with our ship’s breath weapon. After that initial devastating attack a group of Warforged worshippers of Voulge, backed up by Sand King rangers and barbarians, wiped out what was left.

Defending Spellgard – Elite Forces

No sooner had our forces eliminated the Netherese troops from the city centre, than another group of Netherese warriors portaled in. This group consisted of a single platoon of elite troops too powerful for our own forces to handle.

When we dropped down from our ship to fight them, we found ourselves going up against three Shades (2 drow, 1 human), two Thoon Hulk Shades, a Vampire Lord and five Duergar Warriors.

We took out the Duergar Warriors {minions} easily, but the others were more complicated. Because they kept rapidly moving around it was nearly impossible to pin them down long enough to kill them. Dirty Pig became frustrated and transformed into his dragon form hoping his increased size would make things easier. It didn’t help.

Eventually one of the Drow Shades got too close and Dirty Pig grabbed him. Rather than try to kill it, Dirty Pig stuck the Drow on a nearby onager and fired it; sending the Drow flying into the mouth our ships figurehead. The Drow wasn’t quite dead yet, so Zippergwick set off the breath weapon and burnt him to a crisp.

Inspired by what he had witnessed, Eramus climbed up a small hill that had a ballista on top. He loaded the ballista, aimed it at one of the Thoon Hulks and climbed onto the siege weapon. He then laid face down on the large bolt, stuck out his sword and called out to Dirty Pig who fired it.

A ridiculous setup such as this one would render the weapon completely ineffective at its intended range; but in the close quarters of this fight, it was deadly. The attack killed the Thoon Hulk. Not only that, it positioned Eramus perfectly to strike at the other Netherese fighters. From this point on, it was easy to wipe out the rest of the enemy platoon.

A few minutes later we received a report that another elite Netherese force had breached the main gate. We got back on our ship and headed for the location of the disturbance post-haste. When we got there, we found that the elite force against consisted of a single platoon. This time, it was made up of a Death Titan, a Death Giant, a Lich Castellan Wizard, five Dread Assassin Shades and five more Duergar Warriors.

When we dropped down from the ship, Dirty Pig immediately transformed into his giant elemental form and landed in front of the Death Titan with the force of a projectile thrown from a catapult. So basically, an elemental ice titan was holding the Death Titan at bay.

But he wasn’t finished yet. To protect himself from the Death Titan, Dirty Pig conjured some “platinum scales” around himself. He then summoned a localised blizzard that killed some of the weaker enemies and thinned out our opposition.

When Voulge jumped off the ship he used his hover jets to slow his descent, and he landed atop a large field tent. From this vantage point he had an excellent line of sight to most of the enemies on the field, so he fired off shots from his shoulder cannon at them to keep them off balance. One of the Dread Assassins who was too close to tent and had gone unnoticed by Voulge, tried to take him out. But every time the Shade managed to climb onto the tent, Voulge fired a volley from his shoulder cannon, throwing the Shade off the tent. On the second attempt the fall killed the Shade.

Ash and Eramus landed near the Lich and attacked it quickly and fiercely. The undead’s attacks could be quite debilitating and devastating, so they wanted to destroy it as soon as possible. They ended up destroying the Lich before it could even make a move. {This made the DM very sad because apparently the Lich had lots of cool ultra-death powers. We just laughed in his face.}

After taking out the Lich Ash and Eramus went after the Death Titan and Giant respectively. Eramus made short work of the Death Giant and then took a break to light a stogy. In the mean time Ash fought with, and inflicted a grievous wound on, the Death Titan. {crit on a 9d12 attack + 3d12 high crit weapon bonus + 6d12 crit bonus on a vorpal weapon + 3d12 from vorpal weapon’s daily power}

With the Death Titan’s attention directed elsewhere, Dirty Pig took advantage of the opportunity to grab two of the Dread Assassins and smash their heads together in a double noggin knocker; killing them instantly.

The Dwarf then decided to change into his boar form which he’d acquired in his days as a Druid. But because he was manifesting his elemental nature, it was a giant ice boar. In this form he pounced on the Death Titan and gored it with his tusks. Near death, Ash, Eramus and Voulge finished the Death Titan by each firing a magic missile at it.

The fight was over and no more enemy troops showed up. The Netherese invasion had been stopped.

Aftermath

The Netherese had left behind a lot of supplies and valuables and we spent the next couple of days collecting all these spoils of war. The failed invasion had not caused much significant damage and the repurposed Netherese material would help with the continued reconstruction efforts.

A few days later an unexpected solar eclipse brought with it a great feeling of unease to spoil the rejoicing mood. Kelemvor appeared before us with a grave warning; the great evil he had previously mentioned had arrived.

Through a great amount of prayers and sacrifices to Shar, Telamont and Rivalen Tanthul had succeeded in summoning the aberrant planet Alaabar from the Far Realm; and through Shar’s influence warp it into an undead abomination. They planned on using this new weapon to take control of the entire world.

To prevent this from happening, we have to penetrate the surface of the planet and reach its core to destroy it. To help us in this quest, Kelemvor had resurrected our fallen comrades Ilikan and Drake.

This would be a one way mission. There was no coming back as we would die in the endeavour. But upon our deaths we would reach a higher place of existence. Ash, Eramus and Voulge would ascend to godhood. As lesser gods, Ash and Eramus would become Exarchs of Kelemvor and Voulge would be the deity of constructs and artificial beings. Dirty Pig for his part would go to the Elemental Chaos and become a Primordial of ice and cold.

After Kelemvor had departed we briefed everyone on the situation. We then instructed Zippergwick to modify our ship so that it could be flown with a skeleton crew; the six of us that would be going on the mission. In addition to the requested modifications, the engineer had come up with a brilliant upgrade. He had modified the ship’s breath weapon to fire a focused and sustained stream of fire instead of the usual short blast. By using all of the remaining 600 blood vials in one shot, we would be able to burn a hole through Alaabar’s crust all the way down to its core.

Editor’s Note: In the last encounter of this session, none of the monsters managed to hit the PCs with an attack. Some never even got an opportunity to make a single attack before being killed. This greatly dismayed the DM; to the players’ amusement.

It says something about how powerful our characters had become that the DM’s only recourse was using the D&D equivalent of Unicron.