Players: Scritch, Moereu, Balthier, Karn, Tik-Tik, Mathis
The party is mostly green and frail like some of the new leaves on the vines that creep up the Zigarat on the non-miranda side of the portal. Balthier, Karn and I are reunited it is good to see them again. After our last bizarre encounter I feel we are closer in purpose perhaps even closer in blood. Balthier is quiet with an elven grace that would be almost beautiful if it weren’t so lethal. Karn is still a jovial lumox who can be cunning and brutal when necessary. As we walk north our foot falls and his humming are drowned out by the sloshing from the 70 gallons of water that he’s carrying in a barrel under his arm. There are two Kobolds in our party Scritch and Tik-Tik, the are good natured and childlike up to the point that Skritch will happily put a crossbow bolt through the eye of anything he doesn’t categorize as “friend” and Tik-Tik will burn scorch or melt with magical fire, all who oppose him. The final member of the party is a Genasi of calm demeanor and swift axe named Moeru.
We head north from the portal through a tropical forest that gives way to grassland. I suggested we follow the salt scent of the sea to the east. After a time we came upon a crocodile and its mate. Both fell to our arrows, though Karn was foolish enough to get so close that one of the beasts nearly ate him. He stood up out of the dead jaws of the crocodile. That is Karn at the end of a fight, just the warm side of dead, he stands there shaking and smiling as the rage seeps away. We turn inland well fortified with croc and goat meat. The nights this side of the portal are beautiful, warm and lush. This whole land is verdant and smells of a forest and animals growing, rutting, and rotting. I’ve stalked a few animals but killed nothing, there’s no need we’ve meat enough for a few days and nothing has seemed like it would make a particularly good trophy.
I am a lucky fool. As we headed west from the coast across the grasslands I heard something scuttling and rushed to investigate. A brain with legs was upon me and even though I put an arrow into it, it’s claws tore at my flesh and my mind. Happily, the party came to my aid and the creature fell. But then I met its master! A robed figure with tentacles. I leapt back and put an arrow deep in his chest. Karn finished him by tearing his head off. I love that Barbarian. He has such a flare for killing. While Karn and I were busy with the master another brain on legs attached Skritch. It stunned him, but this stun was more serious than I’ve seen before. We dispatched the second walking brain, but couldn’t revive Skritch. Then, quiet unaccountably, another set of explorers appeared. They gave us shelter we gave them food, but no one was able to help poor Skritch. They were kind enough to take Skritch back to Miranda to see if there was someone there who could help him.
Disheartened but the loss of Skritch but still curious we went south on a scenic route back to the portal. We encountered a beautiful elven woman who was charming and not at all malevolent. Better still she was bathing in a good sized stream of fresh water! There is potable water in this hot tropical land and we’ve found it and marked it for future adventurers. Finding the water after four days of listening to Karn slosh along gave me the idea that an industrious set of adventurers might create a network of cisterns to keep explorers well watered without requiring an overgrown waterboy like Karn on every adventure.
Last night I was awakened by a stampede. We killed four of the beasts. More meat 40lbs. It was a little sad to kill the creatures, but they were a clear danger to the party, especially little Tik-Tik. Today we tramped back to the portal then endured the freezing dark passage back to Miranda. We were able to obtain help for little Skritch who is no longer in a catatonic state.
The courage and fellowship of this party has restored some of my faith in my fellow creatures, much of the world is filled with beings that are venal, perfidious and cruel, but every once in a great while it is possible to discover those of like hearts and minds with whom to face the grave challenges of the world.