Kingmaker

Another Decade Older
But certainly not wiser

Sarenith 17
We celebrated our 90th birthday today, but we lacked cake since we’re still off in the wilderness. I shall be sure and order up a delicious one for us once we get back. Khismia continues to try and lure Eran off alone, apparently content with being a “short-term relationship” as he terms it.

We entered the grazing lands of a herd of mastodons today, and while Jiro cautioned us that the bulls could be very aggressive, we managed to avoid them due to his masterful tracking skills. Overall, a pretty average day. We’ve heard rumors of a weird stone, “The Ghost Stone,” in the mountains which glows at night. We’re headed there to check it out tomorrow.

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Vygon Expanded
Kingdom Busywork

Sarenith 6
We’ve commissioned a new bank for Isenfell, which my brethren at the cathedral are eagerly awaiting stewardship of. We’ve also put in a second everflowing spring (so handy in case of a siege!). Vygon got most of our building efforts this month with a bunch more housing, a stable, shop and tavern.

We’ll be celebrating our 90th birthday later this month, will that at last make Ilona a responsible adult? Doubt it! We’ve also set in place all the preparations needed for the midsummer festival later this month. Perlivash has decided to stay behind to “enjoy” the festival this time since we keep missing them while we’re off in Varn’s lands. I claim no responsibility for his actions while I’m gone!

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Nasty Little Beasts
But we've got quills!

Desnus 20
We’ve been exploring along the South Rostland Road, completely uneventfully, I might add. We found a Nomen burial ground, but are leaving it alone. Earlier today we saw a large number of carrion birds circling something, so headed over to investigate. We found the bodies of several large creatures decaying in the sun, and as we got closer it became obvious that they were manticores, riddled with what looked like quills. Oddly, as manticores also have quills, they didn’t appear to be the same type of quills… As we got closer to investigate, a large spiny creature jumped into the middle of our horses and shook itself, like a dog shaking off water, only instead it sprayed us with many, many quills. These quills were apparently poisoned as several of us (and our horses) started to feel ill immediately. Even worse, the creatures (as another one appeared as well) were so closely packed with spines that any melee attack was sure to brush more quills against ones skin and add more poison to that already flowing freely. We prevailed against them, but we weren’t feeling particularly well by the end, and all our horses but Ilona’s had succumbed to the poison. We did remember to collect the manticore quills that our local poet wanted.

Since we aren’t far from Restov, we’ll need to walk there, get new horses, and then it’ll be time to get back to Isenfell again.

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Another New Settlement
Vygon founded

Desnus 8
Didn’t find anything else of interest in the mountains last month, but we did return safely with the roc eggs which we apparently have experts watching over until they hatch. I wonder how hard rocs are to domesticate?

We’ve established a new settlement near the barbarian cairn stones north of Isenfell and named it Vygon. The first structures erected there were city walls, though we’re rapidly adding housing, a stockyard, granary, tannery, inn, smithy and library. They should be finished within the month.

We’ll be heading out shortly to explore along the South Rostland Road, so I think I’d best get my bags packed.

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We Meet the Roc at Last
And it flees

Gozran 15
We’ve been out exploring the mountains again but finding little of interest. Today though, we must have gotten too close to the nest of the roc we’ve seen flying around. Not wishing to needlessly slaughter it, Jiro attempted to get closer and influence it favorably with wild empathy, but instead must have insulted its ancestors somehow as the next thing we knew it was attacking us. We defended ourselves and it fled, leaving three eggs in its nest which we’ll collect on our way back to Isenfell if the roc hasn’t returned (Ilona now has visions of our cavalry eventually being mounted on rocs!).

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Aftermath
Eran interested in Evelyth?

Gozran 5
We’ve been busy cleaning up the remnants of Vordecai’s army, but at least with their cyclops generals and lieutenants removed it’s work that Seamus’ wardens can handle quite easily. We had to rebuild a mine they pillaged on the way past, but I don’t think they’ve done any permanent damage. Our people seem quite confident now with how fast we handled the threat. Eran’s raised a garrison for Tatzlford and Isenfell; commissioned a granary, town hall and jail in Olegton, and established an everflowing spring in Isenfell.

Evelyth continues her efforts to recruit crusaders, and with our heroic defeat of the cyclops with her help, she’s had no lack of volunteers wishing to learn to fight. Interestingly enough, Eran’s been spending a lot of time with her, and not just when needed for state matters…

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Invasion!
The cyclops are not content in their mountains

Gozran 1
We’d barely ridden back into Isenfell when a runner found us and informed us that a large force of humanoids led by cyclops had been sighted inside our borders to the south. No rest for the weary…

Evelyth had been gathering her crusader recruits in town and offered to join us when she heard the news. We left Garess with some hurried orders to ready the town defenses and set out to do what we could to slow their advance and hopefully take out some of their leadership.

Once a ways out of town, Evelyth asked us to hold for a minute. After swearing us to secrecy she revealed that Karaglen, rather than being the elf she appears, is actually an adult silver dragon, Evelyth’s paladin mount! Evelyth, with her superior experience with battle groups suggests that the army, currently two loose columns, could probably be split and dealt with half at a time. Scouts have discovered that the stupid raven appears to be the only thing holding the columns together. We explain that the raven is probably the familiar of the undead cyclopian warlord that we’d mentioned before and it would be awesome if we could kill it…

Our plan is pretty simple: Evelyth and our party will take on the cyclops leadership in one column (assuming the bugbears and hobgoblins are likely to flee if there’s no one forcing them to go on) while Karaglen distracts and harasses the other column to keep them from reinforcing our foes. After a few minutes buffing up we charge our intended foes, concentrating on the lesser cyclops and leaving the fodder to Breela’s fireballs. Khismia and Ilona each charge a cyclops of their choice while the rest of us run into the fray on foot. Evelyth soon gets separated from us and surrounded by lesser enemies, but she seems fine on her own, so we leave her to her own devices. Breela, in the mean time, gathers some melee combatants of her own and is forced to take to the skies to continue picking off enemies with fireballs. The greater cyclops enters the fray and it’s all Eran and I can do to keep our own team alive! Occasionally we can see clumps of hobgoblins from the other column attempting to regroup with our fodder, but a silver dragon usually put a stop to it before they could get close.

With Jiro anchoring the greater cyclops, Ilona manages to take out most of the lesser cyclops nearby so we can focus on the biggest threat. Unfortunately, our enemy mastermind decides to put in an appearance (at least one has to assume a lich cyclops with Vordecai’s symbol on his cloak is probably Vordecai, though I suppose he could have an army of lich cyclops under his command for all we know…) and starts spell dueling with Breela. He manages to blind Breela, effectively shutting her down completely. At least by then she and Evelyth had pretty much removed all of the hobgoblins and bugbears from our column, but she was forced to remain in the air and out of danger until we finished the combat. Once we’d dispatched the remaining cyclops lieutenants, Vordecai teleported to safety (surprise, surprise!). After guiding Breela down, we went to check on Karaglen’s column to find it in complete disarray and the greater cyclops chasing her around while she stayed just out of reach. Apparently an army makes a fun toy for a dragon… With Vordecai’s attempt to invade foiled, we headed back home to celebrate.

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Lost and Found
Located a missing brother

Pharast 26
We found the missing Hanvaki brother today, unfortunately (but not unexpected), he wasn’t still alive. It looks like he must have fallen down the mountain and died from his injuries. We removed his belongings to return to his brother and buried the body.

I was also too tired a couple of days ago to note that we found a good sized chasm crossed by none other than a “bridge” made of spider silk. On the other side we could see the body of a dwarf still holding a glowing warhammer. Not trusting that whatever put up the webs wasn’t lying in wait, we used dimension door to reach the other side and take the hammer. We buried the dwarf’s body and then collected the spider silk for our aspiring seamstress to use in her creative endeavors. Cutting and reeling in the silk attracted the attention of its creators and we removed a few more giant spiders from the wilderness.

We’ll head back to Isenfell in the morning.

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Our Enemies Get More Clever
A cyclopian ambush

Pharast 21
We were exploring into the mountains today when we came upon a group of bugbears heading south, deeper into the mountains. We decided to follow them to see where they were heading and what they were up to. Not being particularly stealthy as a group, they soon saw us and sped up, apparently heading for a group of caves we could see. We didn’t really want them meeting up with other allies, so we decided we should cut them off. However, it was all a trap as when we rounded a bend in the mountains on their tail we came face to face with one of the huge cyclops with a horn!

Roaring in challenge, he engaged us in combat, with the bugbears immediately rallying around him to also fight us. They also had more bugbear companions waiting along the mountain ridges and throwing javelins at us. After a very harrowing fight (not from the bugbears, but that cyclops can sure dish out the damage), we finally stood victorious!

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An Abandoned Fort
And not much else

Pharast 19
It’s been very, very boring for the last week. We’ve been exploring but there’s been nothing to see other than that roc flying around off and on. We did see a beautiful waterfall on the Shrike river, but otherwise nothing else worth noting. Today we came upon a fortress on the South Rostland Road (as expected), but what was unexpected was the complete lack of garrison there. It didn’t look like they’d just walked off in the middle of what they were doing like the people of Varnhold, but rather like they’d been recalled. The supplies were no longer there, mundane equipment carefully stored away and no weapons left about the place. I’m assuming with the tensions rising in Brevoy that they figure they’d rather have them nearby than guarding a relatively safe border fort. I hope we hear back from our nephew soon on the state of affairs as he knows them. We’re mostly just getting rumors way out here, rather than solid facts.

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