Wednesday, October 8, 2014

Session 1: A Red Day

Captain Jonas Abraham was captain of the frigate Rebecca which ran into problems in a storm causing the ship to be run into a sandbar and a hole ripped into the bottom of the boat.  To repair the damage, a group comprised that included a Scurillian carpenter named Pol-ariss, the Dutch first mate Edward Marlow, a French fire mage bodyguard Jean-Baptiste Delacroix, and a couple of randomly assigned men that included the Kraken healer Carnage and a Doreen scout Blix.  This group was sent to find provisions and suitable lumber to patch the boat.  While the group undergoes this task, the rest of the crew would attempt to careen the ship so it could be fixed with the supplies gathered.

The small adventure group surveyed the surrounding area climbing some trees to locate suitable locations for provisions and wood.  A stream was located with trees believed to be suitable for repairs was located inland along and so in that direction the party went.
 
The group easily made their way to the stream and traveled up the stream.  Along the Blix and Pol-ariss noticed a skiff and decided to investigate.  Edward, aloof as always, acts as if he had seen the skiff all along and quickly “leads” the group to the skiff to better investigate mass now overgrown by vines.  The foliage proved difficult in telling how intact it was easily but the ever curious Pol-ariss was not going to give up and decides to take longer to inspect the craft's condition.  Carnage, seemingly uninterested in the vessel but eager to do something, began chopping down a random tree that the first mate Edward Marlow had picked out.

In the midst of the noise caused by hacking away at the tree, Blix noticed another sound and harshly whispers for everyone to be quiet while slipping behind some vines to gain the element of surprise should it be needed.  The others were not nearly as skilled  or quick and were surprise as a creature standing nearly 7 feet tall and resembling a yellow velociraptor barreled its way toward the noise and possible meal.

The surprise was short lived as the yellowback was quickly greeted by shots of muskets.  The gun fire had little effect though as it couldn’t seem to pierce the tough hide of the lizard.  A blast of fire from Jean-Baptiste was then brought forth and was shaking the creature as the remainder of the group descends upon the beast.   Blix, in his attempt to sneak through the bushes, made a large amount of noise in his rush to get close to the yellowback.  This noice drew the atttention to Blix and now being the closest, provides the beast with a blue-skinned target that would be a wonderful meal.  The claws of the beast lash at the Doreen but the comes up empty.  Blix, now close and without the element of surprise savagely attacks the beast easily bringing his dagger down and providing the poor creature with a quick end.

Not wanting to waist such a great bounty, the creature is butchered to secure more provisions while the tree  was finished being chopped down.    The skiff  was also finished being looked over and looked functional if unrooted from the plants but did have a minor problems of not only having of a hole in the deck but also not having a sail or rigging.

The skiff and the freshly cut wood were left to be retrieved at a later time so the group could easily continued upstream.  A couple more hours of travel lead to the discovery of a large group of wood that the carpenter believed would be suitable for repairing their ship.  The group went about procuring the lumber and when what was believed to be enough to repair the ship was gathered needed to repair the ship the decision was make to go back to the ship.  Rope lines were attached to the wood as it was placed in the water and floated down the stream.  Blix, being a creature of the water, took to leading the logs down the stream.

The groups return was uneventful until they emerged from woods and were starting to near the boat.  At that moment, they realized something was wrong.  They were had been nearing their boat but they realized they couldn't see or hear any of their fellow crew and the smoke they saw on their approach and presumed were campfires, was much larger than a normal campfire would be.  This spurred them to rush onward and the fire was not just a small campfire but was none-other than Rebecca, their ship.

The first mate, Edward, upon seeing the fire, looks at the fire mage, saying he shouldn’t have started a fire before he left.  Jean-Baptiste, with just a quick glance, explained that the fire was poorly made and he would never have done such a horrible job of making a fire.  Of course even with the crude attempts at humor, the crew knew this was not a fire made by Jean-Baptiste.

Wasting no more time, the crew rushes to the crew rushes to the boat in an attempt to retrieve any supplies they could from the burning wreckage.

Blix and Carnage were native to waters and as such were the first to arrive.  Carnage climbed directly onto the burning ship, barely making it in time to remove a single sail that hadn't yet gone up in flames.

Blix was a little more cautious and approached in his typical manner, via stealth.  Boarding the far side of the ship and being sure to scanned the water for signs of other ships and/or creatures.  Seeing none, he then cautiously climbed aboard, listening for any signs of life on the ship burning ship.  A single thump was hear but its location difficult to ascertain.  Remaining cautious continues to wait, hoping to locate the cause.  His patience pays off and he is able to make out labored or panicked breaths. Following them leads to single crew member that had gone into hiding. Blix immediately recognized him as Stewart and attempts to question him as to the who, what, and when.

In Blix's not-so-nice coaking, he learns it was the Red Men natives who had attacked the ship.  At the sight of them, Stewart, being young and not particularly brawny, hid himself.  At about this point in his story, he finally takes the time to look around and suddenly noticed that the ship was on fire.  He now begins screaming and informing Blix of the obvious.  Having no more time to waste on a threat that appeared to have left and a crewman too scared to get information from easily, switched back to the most obvious threat, the fire.  Attempting to be rid of the scared crewman, Blix bids Stewart to head to shore.   Stewart, who was more than a little afraid, told him “No way, I’m staying here with you.  I don’t want to be by myself!”  Having no more patience, Blix once again yells at Stewart, telling him to calm down and once again to head to shore.

Carnage had saved the sails at this point and was now within sight in the water,  Not willing to waste more time arguing, Blix forcefully turned Stewart around and kicked him right off the edge of the ship and into the water.

Edward Marlow, while taking a little longer, headed directly to the captain’s quarters and attempted to find anything useful.  He scanned searched but could find none of the captain’s loot or anything valuable except some of the maps that would be useful for navigation.

Pol-ariss rushed straight for the hole in the ship and decided to enter through there so he could wind up inside with the cargo and cannons.  The interior was partially filled with water and all of the cargo had already been removed.  There were cannons, some cannonballs, and a few kegs of black-powder that within. Decided the fire might render the cannons unusable, Pol-ariss attempts to dislodge one and sent it through the hole he entered.  With some effort, he is successful and then makes his way to grab a single keg of black powder and swam right back out the hole he had entered.

It was at this time that Jean-Baptiste, climbed to the deck of the ship before making his way below past the ever-growing fire.   Jean-Baptiste then followed the same thought process as Pol-ariss and arrived at the same conclusion.  He attempted and made an amazing feat of strength, shoving two cannons at once right out of the hole and down to the ocean bed.  He then also grabbed a keg of black powder and attempted to swim out the whole instead of going back through the fire-filled boat with a keg of black powder.  

The swim was tiring and Jean-Baptiste was soon running out of air, especially with fighting a keg that kept trying to pull him up to the top of the sea next to a burning ship.  As hard as he tried though, he could not get far enough away from the ship full of flames and instead had to release the keg.  The keg gone, and his life on the line, he starts to swim frantically for safely.  He narrowly escapes from the main blast  cause as the keg reaches the top and is set on fire.  This however is not far enough to escape unharmed as the concussive blast traveling through the water knocks the Frenchman into the seafloor enough to cause a wound.  Regained his senses and barely keeping from drowning, he heads back to shore bruised and battered.

Blix, after sending Stewart on his way, looked around but found nothing of use and had abandoned the ship and was swimming back to shore when he noticed the Scurillian, Pol-ariss, was pulling the the cannon on the ocean floor.  Knowing that they would eventually need to be brought to shore, Blix started pulling one of the cannons shoved out by Jean-Baptiste.  The effort to pull the cannons was difficult along the bottom of the sea, but their efforts were rewared as they were able to pull the cannon far enough away to keep from being caught inside the blast radius of the exploding black powder kegs.
 
Carnage, successfully grabbing the sail and even some rigging, while Edward had gathered any supplies they could find not yet in flames.  They were just arriving at the beach where Pol-ariss and Stewart already were, when the explosion occurred.  Seeing the injured Jean-Baptiste had appeared, and seeming to have forgotten about the Doreen, they gathered on the beach to decide what to do next.
Their first order of business was to heal Jean-Baptiste, the only one injured.  Next they went about discussing which really ended up as an argument amongst themselves.  The main topic was the battle of persuasion between Carnage and Edward over who should be the next captain.  They planned to leave the others behind because they were most likely dead and  even though Stewart believed they should go investigate to see if the captain and crew were alright (he seemed have some guilt over not having helped when the Red Men first attacked) but no one else seemed to be of the same opinion.  The group was almost all set to repair and head off on the new skiff they had found Edward noticed/remembered they didn’t their loot and decided that they should go retrieve their loot.
Carnage, having dabbled in tracking, was able to determine the direction they came in, but not a whole lot more than that was determined so they took to the trees once more to learn of the Red Men’s approximate locations before setting out.  Blix once again took the lead and in short time they were able to make their way to where they had seen some smoke and that was in the direction of the tracks.  As they drew close, Blix heard some tribal chanting before and was able to stop the group before getting to close and alerting the savages to their presence.  The group was able to make their way so they could see the savage’s ruined location.  The stone ruins held a large pool of bubbling red liquid that the group believed might have been blood.  At the far end of the pool were a couple of pillars placed on either side of a large statue that stood over 20 feet tall.  The statue looked similar to a humanoid ape sitting cross-legged.  Gathered around the outside of the pool were 8 similarly dressed savages all following the chant of a single savage.  This lead savage seemed to be reciting the chant from memory and had a mystical air about him that resemble that of a witch-doctor or shaman.  This shaman was standing between the statue of the monkape and the column on the left.  Directly in front of him, next to the edge of the pool, was the captain.  Also lined along that end of the pool were 5 other crew-men who were all bound and left kneeling at the edge of the pool unconscious.  
The group went about devising a plan on the most effective strategy for tackling the situation or maybe even abandoning it and just heading back now.  Before any of them could reach a consensus, Jean-Baptiste stepped out from the trees and into the open field to fire off three bolts in quick succession.  This surprised not only the savages but also the players.  The bolts all found their marks and were able to take the lives of two of the savages and the third shot, while not deadly, was enough to shake third savage. The group was left but just a few options, leave Jean-Baptiste to his fate or also attack the savages.  They couldn’t leave the Frenchman or maybe the loot alone and decided they had no choice but to engage the savages.  Guns were fired and characters advanced but in their surprise were unable to deliver deadly blows.  In this confusion, the savages Shaman leader shoved the captain into the bubbling red pool of blood.  This brought about immediate rumbling and hissing from the pool from which a towing creature looking remarkably similar to the statue emerged.  The monkape stepped forward and grabbed a large rock off of the ground from the ruins around the pool which was then used as a club.
This brought uneasiness to the party but Carnage was sure that no matter what, he wanted to take down the shaman.  To achieve this goal, he released a charged bolt at the Shaman, and was able to score a minor wound to the savage’s leader.  The monkape, now having procured a weapon, made its way toward the closest opponent.  The poor, unfortunate soul happened to be Jean-Baptiste, which nearly crumpled when he was delivered a devastating blow from the rock club that caused three wounds.  The fight continued with Edward swarmed by a small group of savages that no matter how hard they tried, were unable to hit the experienced fighter.    The remaining savages attempted to take out Pol-ariss and Carnage who were gathered together.  The shaman, after he finally oriented himself after the he was devastated by the blast of water from Carnage then also attempted to return blast of dark energy to the water mage.  The fight continued in this manner, with each side taking minor damage but neither gaining a distinct advantage.  The characters were able to keep the monkape stunned after his first devastating attack and slowly whittled down the behemoth’s health until eventually the giant monkape, could stand the damaging attacks of Jean-Baptiste and Blix.  Blix was finally brought the 20 foot tall abomination crashing to the ground and the group even delivered enough blows to the shaman that he was just barely on his feet hiding behind the stone pillar.  It looked like the tides had swung in favor of the shipwrecked group, but oh how quickly the tides of battle can change.   With a killing blow delivered, Edward, who had attempted to make his way past the warm of savages to the giant monkape now decided to double back and crush the severely injured Shaman leader.  The already frustrated savages, unable to hit their original target, Edward, decide to head toward the squishier and already slightly damaged Carnage and Pol-ariss.  The savages overwhelmed the two in numbers and quickly brought Carnage down.  It didn’t then take long before the crab’s hard shell was dented and cracked and Pol-ariss was also brought savagely to the ground.  Edward was quick to have moved within range of the Shaman and, using his blunderbuss, he easily blew the few brains out of the Shaman’s head.
Edward, as well as Blix and Jean-Baptiste were unable to make their way in time to help against the leftover savages before their friends were brought to their knees.  This turned the tides again, as there once again became a distinct advantage of almost two-to-one in favor of the savages.  With their numbers and the confidence having already brought down the crab and water mage, the savages once again used their numbers to assault severely injured Jean-Baptiste and the companion at his side, Blix.  The Frenchman and the Doreen traded blows with the savages but the wounded Jean-Baptiste’s swordplay could not manage to keep the assault of savages at bay.  A solid hit dropped Jean-Baptiste as Edward was finally able to come to the aid for the last of the savages.  The fight looked bleak for the crew for they were still outnumbered, the two of them still having to face four savages.
At this point, the injured Blix and the still unscathed Edward both continue to trade blows with the Red Men in this heated death-match when much to all of the combatant’s surprise, a battle cry rang out and the normally cowardly Stewart made a courageous charge into the fray.  Stewart brought his hastily acquired branch down on a savage, who he managed to knock the senses out of.  Blix was then able to incapacitate the same savage and Edward was also able to bring home a killing blow, turning the tables yet again on the savages.  At this point, the two remaining savages attempted to flee but were shaken by the heroes and unable to flee place any real distance.  This left the savages to be easily dispatched and rounds made to see how serious the injuries to the fallen were.
It seems the wounds delivered to Jean-Baptiste and Pol-ariss were too much for their bodies to handle as their bodies lied lifeless on the cold ground.  Carnage still had blood flowing through his veins but also had a significant amount of it coming out of a mangled left arm.  The arm looked useless now, but at least the wound didn’t look to be permanent.