Kingmaker

Session 1
The Trouble With Bandits

The PCs gathered at Oleg’s Trading Post, having accepted a charter that tasked them with exploring the Northern Greenbelt of the Stolen Lands and rooting out evil creatures and bandits.

Oleg Larson informed the PCs about the bandits that were extorting him. The PCs laid a trap, and when the bandits came calling, the PCs made short work of them. One bandit informed the PCs of the camp he came from, and the woman who led them, Kressle. In exchange for this information, and for swearing to join the city guard of Restov, this bandit was set free.

The PCs set out to the Thorn River camp to defeat Kressle and her other bandits. Along the way, the PCs met a grig, Tyg-Titter-Tut, and her faerie dragon friend, Perlivash. They agreed to disrupt the sleep of the bandits at the Thorn River camp.

Upon reaching the Thorn River camp, the PCs quickly dispatched of the bandits, including Kressle. The PCs also learned from another bandit about a man calling himself the Stag Lord, who seemed to be in charge of all the bandits in the Northern Greenbelt.

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Session 2
Amphibians, Dragons, and Grizzlies -- Oh, My!

After dispatching of the bandits at the Thorn River camp, the PCs set out to explore and map the Northern Greenbelt. Along the way, they killed and/or met the following “citizens” —

Killed: two giant frogs who lived in a pond with hot springs.

Killed: a brush thylacine that mauled Alexandros Timon.

Killed: one tatzlwyrm who dwelt in a dam. The village of Tatzlford sprung up in this location.

Killed: a former priest of Erastil who had been cursed into the form of a grizzly bear. The cursed priest lived in a ruined temple of Erastil, but when the PCs killed him, the taint was lifted. This deed brought the PCs the gratitude of Jhod Kavken, a cleric of Erastil they met at Oleg’s Trading Post. The ruined temple was rebuilt and became the center of the town Templehome.

Befriended: a boggard named Garuum and his pet slurk, Ubagub. It was difficult for the PCs to communicate with Garuum as he only knew about 10 words in Common. Still, gestures of peace were exchanged.

Additionally, the PCs found a glade filled with bear traps, set by a mean-spirited trapper who didn’t care what or who fell victim to his traps. The PCs also found the dead body of this trapper, crushed by logs he was setting into a trap.

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Session 3
Fill In The Blanks

The PCs had previously dispatched one tatzlwyrm who dwelt in a dam, but before the beast died, she cried out to her mate, Sleezak.

Well, the PCs returned to that dam, killed Sleezak, and came one step closer to making the Greenbelt safe for colonization.

Additionally, the PCs continued to explore the lands, making notes in their map, such as the location of a dead unicorn and a statue of Erastil. They also found an ancient barbarian cairn. They looted the grave and found a ring of swimming, which Alex later sold.

Also killed:

1 brush thylacine, who had been trapped. The poor creature died a slow, agonizing death at the hands of the PCs.

6 wolves, who sprang from the woods and attacked the PCs and their horses.

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Session 4
Of Mites and Kobolds

While exploring, the PCs found a radish patch and killed a few kobolds who attacked without provocation. One remaining kobold finally calmed down and explained how much his kind loves the moon radishes growing in the patch. The PCs let this kobold go and tracked him to the abadoned silver mine where the kobold tribe, known as the Sootscales, live.

In these caves, the PCs met Chief Sootscale, the leader of the kobold tribe. However, when the PCs first met Chief Sootscale, it was clear he was not really in charge. The tribe answered to kobold mage named Tartuk. The PCs discovered this mage convinced the kobolds to worship a dragon/demon he called Old Sharptooth, and he was manipulating the kobolds into fighting a war with the mites, who had stolen a “magic” statue.

The PCs quickly killed Tartuk, and found a journal among his possessions. This journal revealed that Tartuk was in fact born a gnome and subject to a reincarnation spell that brought him back as a kobold. Being reincarnated as a kobold, a species loathed by gnomes, left the already sociopathic Tartuk quite bitter. He devoted the rest of his life to manipulating kobold tribes into destroying gnome villages and fighting wars they could never win.

After killing Tartuk, the PCs performed a bogus ritual meant to convince Chief Sootscale that they had saved his tribe from Old Sharptooth. A peace treaty was forged between the kobolds and the PCs.

Next, the PCs decided to rid the Greenbelt of the mite menace. Using information from the kobolds, and the tracking skills of Crumpet, the PCs found the giant sycamore that sat atop the mites’ lair. The intrepid PCs found the secret entrance, and laid waste to the evil fey inside. This included not only some 20 mites, but their beloved pets — giant centipedes. There was also a giant tick that the mite leader rode around on!

After killing the mites, the PCs found Svetlana’s lost wedding ring and returned it to her, along with a bushel of moon radishes.

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Session 5
Creature Feature

The PCs covered a lot of land, wanting to finish mapping the Northern Greenbelt and clear up any dangers that would prevent colonization. Among these dangers:

Tuskgutter, a particularly violent boar. The PCs killed the mighty pig and were rewarded by a local hunter (who had somewhat exaggerated Tuskgutter’s size).

1 trapdoor spider, who lived under a trap door (naturally) in a field littered with animal and humanoid bones.

1 will o’ the wisp — unfortunately, this evil creature got away, fleeing from the PCs when it realized it was outmatched.

1 swarm of chew spiders — these spiders made their webs all over the fangberry patch. After clearing away the spiders, the PCs gathered as many berries as they could and brought them to Bokken, the potion brewer, for a reward.

The PCs also discovered a vein of gold, a rickety bridge, a stash of loot under a lightning-struck tree, and a ruined rope bridge.

This ruined bridge once belonged to a man named Davik Nettles. The PCs “met” Nettles when they rang the old bell at the bridge. A walking corpse rose from the water and demanded that the PCs avenge his murder by killing the Stag Lord and dumping his body in the river.

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Session 6
Good Luck Storming the Castle!

The PCs finished exploring all of the Northern Greenbelt and were tasked with defeating the Stag Lord, the so-called bandit king, via a new charter from the swordlords of Restov.

The PCs set out for his fort on the edges of the Tuskwater Lake, and came across a hooded figure. When they approached this figure, who would not answer any of their greetings, the figure threw back his hood and revealed himself to be a thawn, a horribly disfigured type of giant. The thawn attacked, but the PCs quickly took care of it (while being sickened at the sight of his sagging skin).

After dealing with the thawn, the PCs continued on to the Stag Lord’s fort. Max and Crumpet attempted to sneak up to the fort and do scouting, but Max was spotted. He pretended to be drunk and the ruse almost worked, especially when the others caught up to him and pretended to be bandits bringing stolen loot to the Stag Lord.

Unfortunately, the ruse failed when Crumpet, attempting to sneak back to the others without the bandits on the watchtower noticing, walked over the side of the hill and triggered an ancient curse. The curse was set there by Gyronna, who was annoyed that the cultists who used to live in the fort (long, long ago) had stopped being so violent. She awoke the dead cultists resting in the graves that littered the hillside and brought them back to life as zombies, who then killed all the cultists. Ever since then, anyone who walks on the hillside surrounding the fort (and not on the path) has a chance of awakening zombies.

Most of the Stag Lord’s bandits knew about the zombies, and therefore would not be caught dead (hehe) on the hillside. So, when Crumpet triggered the zombies, the bandits knew these were not friends, and attacked.

Using Obscuring Mist to protect them from the bandits firing arrows from the towers, the PCs killed about a dozen zombies before reaching the fort’s front gate. The PCs also fired shots back at the bandits, and Max fired an amazing shot from his sling and killed Falgrim Sneeg, a former soldier who had betrayed Olivia Garess.

Once at the gates of the fort, the PCs called to the bandits to surrender.

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Session 7
The Stag Falls

The bandits opened the front gate but had no intention of surrendering, instead setting loose the very large and very mean Auchs (a bandit) and Beaky (an owlbear). But the bandits, for all their numbers, were not well trained. The PCs killed Auchs (mostly) and the owlbear before the bandits could close the gate behind them.

Inside the fort the PCs continued to dodge arrows fired by the bandits. One bandit, Dovan, attempted to hurt the PCs from the shadows, but he only managed one sneaky attack on Attila before the gnome rushed him and chopped off his head.

The Stag Lord tried to employ similar tactics. He finally revealed himself after firing an arrow at Alex, but immediately retreated behind the corner. Alex, Jordan, and Miss Woof-Woof (who had been tasked to protect Jordan, unbeknownst to the wizard) went after him while Crumpet, Attila, and Max went after the bandits in the towers.

Alex and Jordan came across a naked woman, Medwind Song, who had been tied to a bed and tortured by Dovan. Medwind had already undone most of her bonds, but Alex and Jordan helped her get completely free. Alex went around the corner after the Stag Lord while Jordan handed Medwind her clothes. She threw them down, however, in favor of her two bastard swords and asked to be pointed in the direction of Dovan.

Jordan went around the corner after Alex and finally got away from Miss Woof-Woof, who chose to follow and protect Medwind. Alex and Jordan both took a lot of damage from the Stag Lord, but once the other PCs joined them, they soon surrounded the bandit king. Obviously hung over, the Stag Lord dropped his bow and took up his sword, which was the last mistake he ever made. (Oh, he also was too drunk to remember that he had a couple of healing potions! D’oh!)

After finding the decapitated Dovan, Medwind joined the PCs, but the fight was already won. The PCs killed the unrepentant bandit king! Beneath his helm was a face horribly scarred by acid burns. In fact, there were burns and scars all over his body. Who had hurt the Stag Lord? Did this torture turn him into the monster he was?

Medwind put her clothes back on while the PCs checked the fort for any survivors or other dangers. In the basement, along with all the stolen loot accumulated by the bandits, the PCs encountered a very strange man. This man, very old and haggard looking, crawled towards them — while attached to the ceiling! He summoned a giant ant to attack and attempted to transform into a badger, but the PCs killed him before he could do so. Unfortunately, the man seemed to have a death wish, as he attacked without provocation and even up against insurmountable odds. The PCs never knew who he was, though he did bear a resemblance to the Stag Lord…

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Session 8
And We Shall Call It... This Land

“I think we should call it Your Grave!”

Oh wait, wrong story.

So, after giving Davik Nettles his revenge by throwing the Stag Lord’s body into the river, the PCs headed back to Oleg’s to send news of the bandit king’s defeat to Restov.

Once it was confirmed that our intrepid heroes had defeated the Stag Lord, routed the Northern Greenbelt of banditry, and killed off most of the land’s more dangerous “citizens,” the swordlords of Restov sent a new charter — start a kingdom and colonize the Greenbelt!

To show their good will and desire to remain friendly with this fledgling kingdom, Restov sent money, supplies, and colonists to the Greenbelt.

The PCs set about founding their kingdom. They chose the Stag Lord’s fort as the site for their new capital city, Stagfall, and rebuilt the fort into a castle called Venison Keep (after cleansing the area of the zombie curse).

Choosing leadership involved appointing the PCs to fitting roles and recruiting friends and new allies, including Oleg Larson, Svetlana Larson, Medwind Song, Olivia Garess, Jhod Kavken, and Lily Crane.

A year went by, and the kingdom (still not officially named, but known as the Tusklands), continued to grow. New cities sprang up: Fort Larson in place of Oleg’s Trading Post, Tatzlford in place of the old tatzlwyrm dam, and Templehome in place of the ruined Erastil temple. Even the Sootscales joined the new kingdom! The PCs were on their way to establishing a bastion of civilization.

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Session 9
The Kingdom Better Appreciate These Fucking Mushrooms

After establishing Stagfall, the PCs spent a year building their kingdom. But soon enough, the itch to go exploring had to be scratched. When Svetlana Larson told the PCs about an aggressive, man-eating giant turtle, a spiky, lumberjack-attacking hodag, and an evil, shifty forest drake, the PCs opted to lay down their paperwork and take up their weapons for a while and go forth to make The Kingdom (which still doesn’t have a name) safer.

The PCs took care of Old Crackjaw the menacing turtle and the forest drake (but not until after it got the jump on them and almost killed a few horses).

Additionally, the PCs found an odorous mud pit that had mushrooms growing all around it. When Crumpet ventured close to see what type of mushrooms were growing there he was attacked by a huge carnivorous plant called a tendriculos! This giant plant has a paralyzing bite and it almost swallowed Crumpet whole. Thankfully the PCs used smelling salts to brace themselves against the nausea-inducing smell of the mud and fought the plant with flame and sword.

Aiding in the fight was an old human sorceress who told the PCs to call her Old Beldame (though her real name is Elga Verniex). She used Slow and Ray of Enfeeblement to help keep the tendriculos from eating Crumpet. She told the PCs she lived in a hut on the edge of the Tuskwater and does not like visitors.

Still, despite all the trouble, the mushrooms growing there are black rattlecaps and should be a nice resource for the kingdom.

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Session 10
You Look So Sexy When Blood Dribbles Down Your Chin!

After dealing with the forest drake, the PCs ventured to the area of the forest where Stan had seen the hodag — but they could find no trace of it. Jordan remembered that hodags naturally hide their trail by swinging their tails behind them when they walk, making it very hard to track them. Still, there was plenty of unclaimed forest to explore, so the PCs continued adventuring.

Soon they came across a ruined elven keep — one that Lily Crane had told them about. She had heard one existed but knew nothing about it, and asked if the PCs came across it to look for an item of fine elven craftsmanship.

When the PCs got closer to the keep they saw that one of the towers was adorned with bleached humanoid skulls — definitely not something the elves would have used for decorating. Assuming that there was probably evil in the keep that had to be eradicated, the PCs ventured inside. A trapped portcullis came crashing down and pinned Max — and that was the easiest part of the day.

Inside the keep, the PCs tussled with a quickling who identified himself as Rigg. A small, lightning-fast evil fey creature, he stabbed the PCs a few times before realizing he was probably outmatched and took off running. The PCs let him go knowing they could likely never catch up to him, but they will remain vigilant until they know the bastard is in prison or dead.

Oh, also, Jordan inhaled some crazy mist and went a little nuts. It was hilarious!

The owner of the skulls turned out to be a grimstalker, another evil fey, with a pet assassin vine. He tried to barricade himself in his tower but the PCs gained entrance and hit him with missile attacks while he climbed up the walls and over the trees to try to get into the central tower. He cried out something in Aklo as he plunged to his death.

Finally, the PCs climbed up into the central tower where they found a baobhan sith (pronounced baa-vaan shee). Known to Rigg and the grimstalker as the Dancing Lady, this evil fey creature had the appearance of a beautiful, blonde, green-eyed elf. She danced for the PCs, captivating them with her undulating motions. All of the PCs fell prey to her spell at least once throughout the encounter, but they came up with some clever techniques to see past her sexy dance.

Jordan cast Obscuring Mist, Alex kept his eyes closed (and later so did Attila and Max), and then Jordan and Crumpet used a tag team approach to let one attempt to see through the Dancing Lady’s facade while the other watched intently to see if their ally failed. Though the baobhan sith almost killed Alex, draining his blood even as the others gazed on with dopey expressions, the PCs did finally kill her. And thankfully, the psycho fey had some great loot!

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