Tales from Karickbridge

Darkness Falls

Sometimes it’s best to leave old treasures in barrows where they are…

Characters:

Elathan, Elowyn, Isembard Ironfist, Nab’han

Summary:

The adventure started in the ruined farmhouse outside Saxton, where the party were recovering from their encounter with Sir Alcuin. The four pieces of treasure that they retrieved from Tuannon Dur’s burial mound were exerting a certain fascination on both Isembard and Elowyn. One night, Isembard forgot to take the ring off his finger before settling down to sleep. The others became concerned when they were unable to raise him the next morning. Removing the ring had no apparent effect. At Dougan’s suggestion, the others put on the remaining artefacts.

They all woke up in the same nightmare, running in a forest from howling wolves they couldn’t really see until breaking out into a clearing together. The hounds remained in the forest whilst the party examined the skeleton of a knight huge tree at the centre of the clearing. Although the tree attacked them, they were able to retrieve a note written by the knight and a bottle of holy water as well as discovering a hole between the roots leading to an underground passage.

The passage led to a cavern populated by strange shadows that attacked the party and then a vast underground chamber containing a shadow lord wearing a diadem identical to the one that Elathan had put on to enter the dream world. Elowyn stole the diadem from the shadow lord using telekenisis and the party fled through a passage at the other end of the hall.

Emerging from the underground tunnel system, the party found themselves in foothills above a vast marsh. Descending to the edge of the marsh they were confronted with a myriad of small islands and paths. The waters appeared to be full of bones from an ancient battle that had taken place here centuries before. The party was lead through the maze by a crow to the shore of a great lake. The crow was eager that they take a boat moored to a jetty out into the lake but before they did this they spotted a hill a little way off bearing at its summit a standard. Ascending the hill they found a skeletal champion wearing bracers identical to those being worn by Nab’han. Defeating the skeleton, they took to the water, rowing out to a pair of islands, one a mere rocky outcrop sporting a tall tower, the other more substantial and having signs of an ancient fortress on top.

Stopping at the tower first we ascended the stairs to enter a chamber at the centre of which was a glowing cage housing a spectral woman. She was in posession of a ring identical to that being worn by Elowyn. All the party could extract from her was a promise to surrender the ring if they brought her the head of the lord of the realm. Not happy with this, the party enraged the woman who revealed her true nature as she tried to reach through the bars of the cage to attack them. Siezing her arm, they hacked her hand off to obtain the ring.

Descending once more to the boat the party set off for the larger island. As they approached it, they were attacked by a giant freshwater kraken. Nab’han was beaten senseless while the other party members did battle with the tentacles. Whilst trying to stabilise the boat, Elowyn spotted something shiny in the depths. Once the kraken was severely wounded it propelled the boat to the shore, crashing it on the rocks. While Nab’han was recovering, Elathan swam out to find the source of the shining that Elowyn had spotted. Whatever it was was too deep to retrieve simply, so he took a rock from the shore, loaded it onto a part of the boat wreckage and swam out again. Using the rock as a weight he was able to descend to the watery corpse of a knight. He was shocked when it gripped his arm powerfully and communicated to him that the lord of the realm, Tuannon Dur, could only be defeated using a magical chain that was wrapped around his arm. Retrieving this, Elathan returned to the shore. Nab’han appeared to have recovered from his encounter by now. When examining the chain, Elowyn felt it cutting off her access to her magic.

Ascending to the fort the party passed through the outer fort arriving at a rope bridge connecting the main island to a rocky mountain outcrop. At the other end of the bridge, they found four obsidian pillars bearing runes that Isembard was able to identify as representing morning, noon, evening and night. Behind the pillars was a cavern into the mountain. They entered this and were confronted by an illusory image of Tuannon Dur. Eventually they tracked him down to a chamber where they bested him in combat using the chain to hamper his magic and retrieved the last item, Tuannon’s torc.

Returning to the obsidian pillars, the party just managed to associate the correct items with the correct pillars thanks to some clues that Tuannon had let slip before the spectre from the tower, now released from her prison, arrived. The whole realm disolved returning the party to a natural sleep back in the ruined farmhouse.

Madelaine gave them each a brass enameled ivy brooch that would enable them to identify themselves as Baron Aldred’s agents.

Places Visited:

Tuannon Dur’s shadow realm

Items:

Tuannon’s diadem, ring, bracers and torc

Significant Enemies Defeated:

Tuannon Dur

NPCs Involved:

Madelaine, Dougan mac √Čogan, brother of Cornumbrian chieftan.

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