- The Journey to the Ring.
- The Ruins of Gallotha.
- The Fermag Mines.
- War in the West.
- The End of Addryn Thane.
The party has a winter to prepare for the spring voyage. Rhein Hareld's last message mentions The Ring Of Ellcidar and Thorgad's Mirrors. Research in the Midwinter Academical Society shows that the Ring was a stone circle found on an island of the same name. There was also a sizeable Annan city built around the ring. The island of Ellcidar was to be found far to the east in the Misty Isles. Thorgad was an Annan mage who lived and worked in the city of Barrennion. Barrennion is one of the two possible cities seen by Bucky in his Dream. The party decides to travel to Ellcidar and then onto Barrennion.
The party also needs to recruit new blood. Bucky has been killed, Callum is traveling north to the New Kingdoms to try and marshal their defences against a goblin invasion and Huw wants to research the 'gate' spells used by Rhein Hareld. The remaining companions hire six new men - a mana molder (Oleg ), a wild mage (Mervyn Glyn Borin), a seer, an armsmaster, a priest of Erryn, an arcanist (Owyn Tremyr) and Callum's mentalist cousin David McFane.
In early march, the voyage begins. On the docks as the ship begins to sail, they are joined by Huw. He explains that his conscience will not allow him to stay behind while his friends risk their lives. They set off for the Misty Isles, the trade winds blowing them eastwards at a fair speed. The journey passes peacefully, but Huw is unable to find his sea legs, and spends most of the journey locked away in his cabin,
After about five weeks the ship reaches the Island of Ellcidar. Reefs surround the island. David shape changes into a seagull and flies over the island. In the southern hilly region is a large ruined city while the eastern shore bears a natural bay and a ruined town. The ship navigates around the island to the bay. As the ship anchors in the bay, the captain warns the party that a storm is brewing up in the west and coming their way. With this in mind, Sparrow, Oleg (the mana molder) and Alex go ashore for a quick reconnaissance.
As they approach the shore, a figure appears in the ruined town. It is an old man, wearing threadbare clothes. The old man's name is Thorn. He tells them he is the guardian of the island and that they must leave immediately. As Thorn turns to leave, David contacts them from the ship. The captain is getting worried about the coming storm. To his experienced eyes it looks unnatural and is approaching at too unnatural a speed. He wants to up anchor and move to deeper water.
Sparrow and companions decide to ask Thorn if they can move their people onto the island to ride out the storm. They run to catch up with Thorn, but while they are explaining their request to him he suddenly interrupts saying that some of his party have entered the city. He immediately teleports away. The companions swiftly return to the town and signal the ship. The ship is searched and it appears that Huw, Owyn the arcanist and Tor the seer have disappeared.
David and Mervyn the chaotic leave for the town while the ship raises it's anchor and sails for deeper water. The party set off for the city using fly spells. As they approach the city, they here the sounds of conflict. They fly over the city and find Thorn badly injured outside a large domed building. Thorn describes how he fought three people, who match the descriptions of the three missing companions. The party heal Thorn and convince him to allow them to help get to the bottom of the mystery.
They enter the domed building and find an activated gate, which they travel through. They find themselves in a large cavern. At one end is a large circle of standing stones. Thorn announces that it is the Ring of Ellcidar. Inside the ring is another transport gate. They enter this gate and find themselves in a strange mist filled place. They have been transported to a demi-plane of some sort.
They explore further and find buildings, seemingly abandoned after a battle. The buildings are old and seem to be part of some school, except one. A large cathedral-like building that has been warded. The party enters the building, which appears to be a temple dedicated to the god Balor. Towards the rear, a large room is locked and sealed. Mervyn sends his senses into the room beyond. The first is filled with thirty strange glass-like globes, inside which something can be seen moving. As he watches, one cracks open and a strange dragon-demon-human hybrid creature emerges.
Beyond this room is another smaller room dominated by the huge stone statue of a demon. Before the demon are the three missing companions. Huw stands before the statue casting some sort of spell. The other two are in a trance and sparkling energy conduits connected them to Huw.
Together, the party transport themselves through to the far room. Sparrow approaches Huw, asking him what he is doing. Huw immediately turns and attacks the party. A battle ensues and David casts a spell to send Huw into a coma. Huw succumbs to the spell and collapses to the ground. The seer and arcanist collapse also as their link to Huw is severed.
They examine Huw's body and detect that the mind inhabiting the body of Huw is that of Rhein Hareld. The party is shaken, at some point after Bucky's death, Huw body has been possessed by Hareld's spirit and his own has been driven out. Hareld's machinations have bought them here to complete some plan of his own. Owyn and Tor, when they come around, remember nothing that has happened for the last three days. Onboard the ship they were visited by Huw and that is all they remember. Oleg detects that they have been True Charmed.
They leave the church and return to the city. Outside the storm has hit with incredible force. Thorn, who has been here for over five hundred years, has never seen it's like before. They wait out the storm in the domed building. Sparrow and Oleg return through the Ring and search the buildings. They return with books from a library they found. The books, though old, have been perfectly preserved by the sterile atmosphere of the demi-plane. The party is able to magically decipher the books, which tell that the place was a training ground for priests of Balor.
The books tell that the priests were trying to create a hybrid creature mixing human, dragon and demon features. The experiments worked too well and they were unable to control their creations, known as the Spawn, which were sealed in stasis spheres. Before they could continue their work, they were attacked by Annan mages who killed the priests and sealed up the church and demi-plane.
The party tries to decide what to do about Rhein's spirit. Oleg uses a mirror to trap the soul of Rhein, explaining it will remain trapped until the mirror is broken. Thorn casts a preservation spell on Huw's body to halt the decay. He offers to keep the body preserved on the island until they can find some way of reuniting Huw's own soul with the body.
After several hours of wind of rain the storm dies down. David mentally scans the island and local sea for signs of the ship and their companions. He finds no sign of them but does detect some strange presences in the city. Using spells of invisibility they scout the area and discover that some of the Spawn have escaped their stasis spheres and left the demi-plane. Rhein Hareld's plan has become apparent, to release the spawn.
They decide to attack the spawn, which they regret when they realise that just one proves to be a match for the five of them. While they finish off the first, the other Spawn fly away. Sparrow returns to the demi-plane to discover that all thirty of the stasis-spheres have collapsed allowing their contents to escape. Sparrow returns through the ring with the bad news and the party manage to close off the Ring gate.
With the spawn gone and the gate closed, the party resumes their search for the ship. After several hours of searching they find one of the ship's boats carrying the armsmaster, priest, ship captain and some of the crew. The ship has been forced onto the reefs and holed. The survivors have rescued most of the party's personal effects. Thorn uses a node-gate to get them to an island further north on the shipping lanes where they are able to find a small fishing village. From there they are able to hire passage on a ship to the mainland.
Maps of the eastern Wildlands show the locations of two ruined port cities, Gallotha and Barrennion. The party decides to trek northwards from the southern coast to Gallotha and then onto Barrennion. Using flying spells they are able to cover great distances and after only ten days arrive at Gallotha. They find a city deserted for centuries and now almost completely overgrown.
Initial exploration shows that the city has been explored within the last hundred years. The party follows the trail of the most recent explorers. In the city they are attacked by a hoard of skeletons. They defeat the skeletons and move farther into the city. The original explorers ended up at a set of three towers. They explore them and in the third are attacked again by skeletons. The seer and priest of Erryn are killed and the rest of the party badly injured. After resting they continue up the third tower. At the top they come across a large chamber. In the chamber is the source of the undead, a lich.
The battle against the Lich tests the party to the limits and two of their hirelings, the seer and priest are killed. The Lich's corporeal form is destroyed and they set off in search of the Lich's canopic jar. The jar is defended by a host of magical and mundane traps but the party battles through and destroy the jar.
The party set off northwards to Barrennion. On the way they discover signs of human villages which have been burned to the ground and the inhabitants massacred. As they get nearer, they come across a large patrol of goblins. The party tries to secretly investigate the goblins but are discovered. The party beats a tactical retreat away to prevent an encounter. That night, they are attacked by a group of goblin 'Witch Hunters'. Most of the party are overcome by a Slumber Cloud and the rest captured as they attempt to fight.
The party come round in a dark cavern. They are naked, manacled and weaponless. Before them they can see Addryn Thane and a group of Goblins. Addryn tells them they are in the Fermag Mines and they will live out the rest of their lives here. He then leaves. Each of the companions is confined to a twelve foot deep pit with a locked iron grill barring the entrance. The manacles are enchanted to prevent spell casting. They are alone for several hours during which they try several attempts to break free, but to no avail.
After several hours they see a light appear in the cavern they are in. Sparrow sees a goblin leaning over the edge of his pit. He drops a small hacksaw in the pit. He tells Sparrow he is sorry for being late, but he had trouble getting away. He then steps back from the pit. They hear a strange gurgling noise and then silence. Sparrow cuts off the manacles and shimmies out of the pit. He finds the goblin dead on the floor with a jewelled sword through his stomach, he has committed suicide. Sparrow opens up the next cell and drops the hacksaw in. While the rest of the party escapes he examines the sword. When he picks it up it begins to speak to him! The sword is a twin to his own sword Lathcewyr. This is the undead slayer Danncewyr. It was discovered by a goblin who was unable to defeat the sword in mental combat. The possessed goblin has been here for years, trying to stop the goblin's activities.
The party escape to cells and explore the mines. They are on the deepest level of an ancient complex being mined for copper, iron and other trace minerals. David, who has powerful shape changing abilities, turns into a mouse and escapes the mines. From outside he is able to mentally summon the other players to him. They rest up in the nearby Starkwood Forest. They make several secret sorties into the mine complex to get some basic equipment and weapons. They then set off to Barrennion.
A day later the party arrives on the outskirts of Barrennion, a huge walled Annan city now completely inhabited by goblins. Outside the city they discover a huge area of churned up mud and grass. Mervyn and Sparrow examine the area and discover that it was only recently abandoned and prior to that there were thousands of goblins here. Perturbed they infiltrate the city. They discover that there are some humans here, Saith and Jehillan merchants are fairly common. The city is completely in the hands of the goblins and they seem to have been here for many years.
When exploring, they see a goblin mage carrying one of their lost magical items. The party decide to make a series of raids on the important goblin building to regain some of their equipment. In one night they attack the Witch Hunter's Guild, the Temple of Narrok the Blind and the Military Command HQ. They recover many of their items but discover many alarming things. The goblins have been massing a huge army to attack various places in the west. There are several hundred highly trained goblin magicians and arcanists accompanying the armies. Several have explored the western realms to find suitable staging points for the armies which they are moving westwards using magical 'gates'. This will allow them to cover the distances in a matter of days.
Alarmed the PCs prepare for a long journey home. Hopefully in time to prevent the goblin invasion.
The party set off westwards, flying the long journey home. Halfway and some time later they come to the western slopes of the Gaerdaen mountains. They discover a huge staging post, filled with thousands of Goblins. There are also four magical 'gates' leading from the staging post to the Vale of Erryn, Tanglewood Forest, the Stonelands and Midwinter. David shuts down the gates while Mervyn and Owyn summon flashfires and tornadoes to devastate the staging post. With the area cleared they set off for the Vale of Erryn. They arrive just after the Goblins, who are outside the town of Stonecross. Using their knowledge of the goblin gate spells the PC travel to Eldridge to summon the paladins of Orloth and Phaedra to the aid of the Valemen. Two days later a titanic battle is fought in the fields of Stonecross. After many hours, the allied army of Paladins, Valemen, Highlanders and mercenaries defeat the 30000 strong Goblin army. Unfortunately, the allies lose 80% of their men, including many Paladins and Vale Gatewardens.
After the exhausting battle, the party heads off to see how the rest of the west has fared. The second army has left Tanglewood and is heading for the city of Gorlas. The party set a number of magical 'mines' to delay the goblins while they head south. In the Stonelands, the dwarven armies have massacred a Hobgoblin army that outnumbered them three to one. In Midwinter, the city is under siege, but the mages of the Academical Society have been able to check the Goblin mages.
The party returns to Gorlas with the remaining Paladins and 2000 dwarven soldiers. They are hailed as heroes and the king gives a banquet in their honour. During the banquet, the party is betrayed by the king who has sold out to the forces of Addryn Thane and the goblins. The party is attacked by some of Addryn Thane's Doomguard, his personal guards. Fortunately the PCs defeat the Doomguard but it is too late for the city, the Goblins gate themselves into the docks area and begin taking the city. Things go badly for the allied defenders. Alex executes the king and the party enters the battle. They are too late to stop the Goblins taking the city but are able to rescue many of the defenders.
Defeated, the party returns to Eldridge. Here the speaker tells them that the Giants and Saith have begun to expand out from their territories of Bosque and Azoral. They are dispatched to help. The Saith from Bosque are repelled by the troops of Calador and Larosh. In the south, the Saith fair better. They quickly invade Orla, which falls to them, and northern Cambria. With help from the parties magical gates, the defenders are able to halt the Saith invasions and finally turn them back to their own lands.
Following success in Cambria, the PCs return to Midwinter to fight the last goblin army. When they get there, the goblins have abandoned their siege and left for home. The party then travels back to Gorlas to deal with the remaining goblins.
In their absence, bad things have been happening Gorlas. The party find that the goblin invaders have been massacred. Owyn scrys the past and discovers that they were killed by Addryn Thane's own Doomguard! Wondering why Thane would kill his own allies they explore the city further. In the palace they find Addryn Thane and his Doomguard commanders. Sparrow believes that this is the time to confront Thane and Oleg can capture his in his mirror.
The party bursts in and a battle ensures. While the rest of the party tackle the bad guys, Oleg casts his Mirror Trap spell - which succeeds! Addryn's body slumps to the ground, dropping his magical sword. The rest of the party turn to the Doomguard remaining. Oleg sees Thane's sword and picks it up for himself. But Oleg was not prepared for the sword, which engages him in mental combat. The sword comes out on top, dominating Oleg's mind and taking control of his body. His first act is to smash the mirror and free Thane's spirit.
David and Sparrow notice Oleg's actions. David paralyses Oleg while Sparrow engages the spectral Addryn Thane with Danncewyr, the Undead Slayer. Davis forces open Oleg's hand, forcing him to drop the sword and end it's control over him. Sparrow continues his fight with Thane. The spirit valiantly tries to escape but the other party members magically seal of all exits from the room. Sparrow continues to attack Thane's spirit. His sword drains the energy from the spirit and after a few solid hits Thane's spirit explodes into a blaze of crystal shards.
Addryn Thane's plots have finally been ended. His spirit form has been destroyed, perhaps permanently, and the west is again safe.