Cullen is my 5th Edition D&D Cleric
These are some excerpts from his journal entries
==Earlier Journal Entries==
They have water damage, and may not be salvageable. Then again, if the proper magicks are applied…
==Session Report 12/09/2016==
===Journal Entry #17===
Due to the scarcity of available bunks at the orphanage, I have found myself needing some alternative plans for shelter.
I found a group of people who appear to be really nice: a fine strapping young lady ‘Thumper’ who seems to have a pet bear for some reason. I’m sure there is quite a story behind that one, I’ll have to remember to ask her some day.
There is a Paladin, Joe I think his name is, I dimly recall him stopping by at the orphanage one day to drop a squalling brat off. Joe is currently out on some boondoggle for his church or something. Maybe he’s out with Elvis saving a Kingdom or something. I have yet to meet this mysterious Elvis.
It seems I just missed Thaddeus and Hans. Hans I have worked with in the past, but have not seem him in quite a while. According to the tenants that ARE here, Thaddeus is a fine upstanding citizen – and a fellow cleric! Those two are on an errand someplace, and should be back shortly – or so I am told.
Hmmm – reading what I have written so far, I see I have failed to mention just whom I HAVE met – besides the lady Thumper. There is Garric – an apprentice locksmith who is trying to find a place to hang his shingle on. He assured me that he only uses his fine fingered skills for good – but I have to wonder. And I am definitely keeping my desk drawers locked.
Then there is Maya, one of those tree hugging Druids – I guess trees need love also or something. She also seems to have an affinity for wild life, I imagine she and the bear get along just fine.
Kerowyn whom I have met previously, was out running an errand when I arrived. From what I remember about her, she is not someone you want to get on her bad side. There are some dark rumors about her past, and I am sure that is just what they are – rumors. Seriously – her a killer? Nah – just rumors…
Finally, last but not least is Linda, with Thaddeus and myself, she makes three Clerics in this manor – which is very comforting to me. Her and Thaddeus being present is what made the decision for me to stay here an easy one – over my initial hesitation due to Garric and especially Kerowyn.
===Journal Entry #18===
I have been sharing the manor with the others for about a week now, and things were going pretty well – although they were getting a bit dull – until the day I came down for breakfast after my morning prayers to Crom – and I saw Marshall Macallen with his feet up sitting in my favorite chair – and eating the biscuits like this was something he did every day.
In between mouthfuls of biscuit, the good Marshall explained to those who were present why he was there. It seems there are opportunities for folks such as myself to generate some much needed income to help pay for the upkeep of this fine establishment.
One of the opportunities which caught my ear, was problems in the neighboring hamlet of Goura. Seems there is something eating or otherwise absconding farm animals.
I glanced over at Garric, but he just shrugged his shoulders and said he had no idea who might be behind such a theft. (Garric is rumored to hang out with some shady types – but he assured me that they would not be interested in pilfering cows)
The Marshall also told us a tall tale about giant bugs or something that have been reported – he really rolled his eyes as he mimicked one of the townspeople reporting that he had seen a 20 foot long bee. We all got a kick out that one – seriously – a 20 foot long bug? Who makes this kind of stuff up?
Seeing that something WAS causing the disappearance of the livestock and I was due to work a double shift at the orphanage – I quickly volunteered to join the expedition to Goura to try to solve this mystery. The fact that there was a 1000sp reward may have participated in my decision also… Hey – a guy needs to have some coin to put food on the table!
Right about this time, as the Marshall was getting ready to leave, into the Manor strode our newest commune member – a Wizard named Auric. Must like gold or something… He handed me his card, and it said something like ‘
Bill Auric – Electrician Wizard and Adventurer’
So – after showing out the Marshall and having a quick breakfast, four of us: Auric, Maya, Linda and myself, headed down the road to Goura.
===Journal Entry #19===
I’m writing this by campfire on the edge of a pasture – this day has definitely been a long one, I’ll be turning in soon as I am done with this entry, but I need to write it down now – while it is still fresh in my memory.
Oh yes, earlier today we headed for Goura – about 20 miles distant from the manor.
I made sure to remind the others to pack a lunch – it was a long walk and I didn’t know of any stops along the way.
We encountered the usual travelers along the road – mainly merchants. Some of them were carrying pretty expensive looking wares, I took note to look them up when I returned – to see if they needed any security services – since some of our manor commune were members of a local security firm.
We reached Goura without incident at midday, and split up to better conduct our investigation. We all agreed to meet back at the tavern for dinner that night and discuss our findings. I immediately learned that the livestock disturbances were primarily occurring in the North Eastern side of town – so I headed there to start my investigations. I ran into farmer McDonald, an elderly gentleman who enjoyed a good drink and a song. He pointed out to me the pasture where the missing cow was last seen.
I spent the remaining daylight hours scouring the edge of the pasture looking for clues, and I finally found some. I had discovered a patch of underbrush along one edge of the pasture was crushed – like something heavy had gone through there. Something heavy and big – larger than the missing cow I was searching for.
Armed with this knowledge, I headed back to town and met up with the rest of the party and traded notes.
Most of the group decided to turn in for the night, but I had a sneaking suspicion that the abductions were happening at night – so I made my way back to pasture I had investigated earlier. Maya also announced she was going to join me in this endeavor – which I gladly welcomed. It would give me someone to talk to. Besides, I know very little about Druids, I thought this might be a chance to see how much of my decidedly 2nd hand knowledge about them was accurate.
The moon had come up – and we had pretty much decided the night was a bust and was going to turn in – when Maya sat up and said “Do you smell that?”. In all honesty, all I could smell was the after effects of todays dinner – so I told her “No”. Turns out, she wasn’t commenting on what I had eaten that evening – but a strange odor she was unfamiliar with. Not wanting to pass up an opportunity to learn something – we headed out – following her nose.
It was at this point, that things got weird – I had heard rumors that Druids can shape shift, but I had never seen it before myself. As Crom is my witness, she smiled slyly at me – and transformed right in front of my eyes into a black panther!
Luckily, she seemed to retain her knowledge and memories while in that form – and didn’t consider me as something that needed attacking. With what I interpreted as a “Follow me” shake of her head – Panther Maya bounded off into the woods – with me right behind her.
She ran us all over the woods – occasionally stopping and sniffing the air – before bounding off in a new direction. I was getting kind of weary of all of the running around and not seeing anything – when she transformed back to her normal self – and told me she had lost the scent.
At that point, we made our way back to our fire – and I wrote this journal entry before turning in for the night.
===Journal Entry #20===
The next day, Maya and I headed back to the Inn to meet up with the rest of the group for a hearty breakfast, and to discuss our plans for the day. It was agreed that we would head to the farm I had originally staked out and to see if we could spot any clues in the woods during daylight.
The going was pretty slow at first, until someone (Maya?) spotted a tree branch that was missing its leaves. We then looked around us closer, and we noticed that a LOT of tree branches were missing their leaves.
Something was definitely going on here. We did our best to follow the trail of missing leaves, and eventually wandered out into another farm pasture. This pasture had some inhabitants – but they were all clustered together at the far side – and looking roughly in our direction. The rest of the group headed for the livestock to try and figure out why they were so obviously agitated.
I decided to try something more direct – I bravely headed for the spot across from them that they were looking at so fearfully. They don’t call me “Cullen the unscared” for nothing you know!
I was almost at the spot I had picked out as being directly across from the animals – when my highly tuned reflexes prevented me from tripping over what was laying the in grass in front of me. Something BIG! In all of my years, I have never seen a lizard as big as this one was – it was completely unnatural in size. I quickly realized it must be the cause of the crushed underbrush I had originally spotted yesterday afternoon.
The Lizard just blinked one of its large eyes at me – and didn’t do anything. It seemed content to just sun itself. While I stood there,
mouth agape sculpted jaw firmly clenched, I knew that while it would be nice to simply shoo this away from the farm – there would be no stopping it from coming back and causing more mischief. Sadly, it had to be killed. This was also the conclusion Linda must have come to as soon as she saw what I was standing in front of. With no hesitation – she shot it with an arrow, which just succeeded in pissing it off. Do I need to remind you, dear reader, that I was still standing toe to toe with now one gigantic pissed off lizard?!
The lizard took a swipe at me – and thanks to my prowess with armor and shield, failed to land a hit. I struck back with my trusty War Hammer “Clyde” and must have gotten my foot tangled in the tall grass throwing off my balance or something, since the hit failed to cause any perceptible damage.
Shortly after, Maya and Auric came up to ponder at this great beastie also. Auric wisely stayed back and cast spell after spell at it, which seemed to just be pissing it off more.
Maya, no doubt feeling secure in my unswayed presence, also got closer to lizard, close enough to hit it with her whip. (Maya had this leather and whip motif, it was actually quite attractive, in a professional sense – of course)
At about this time, tragedy struck – the Lizard no doubt knowing it could not defeat me, switched tactics and struck at Maya – hitting her critically. I assured her that I could handle it – and ordered her to get away while I distracted it.
Maya, bless her heart, retreated to a safe distance, but then unleashed her full fury on the lizard – a bolt of lightning arced down from the sky – square onto the Lizard – missing me by just a hairsbreadth!
I made a mental note to gently remind Maya to make sure everyone is clear in the future. While some no doubt found it amusing, I did not like the fact that now every hair on my head – including my beard! was standing on end..
The Lizard decided that one lightning bolt was enough, and tried to flee. I, of course, was not having any of that – so I soundly struck it as it was running away.
At this point, the Lizard was now bleeding profusely, so it was a simple matter for our party to finish it off.
We sat down to catch our breath, and discussed our next step. It was agreed that we should bring the head with us back to town as proof of our claim to have saved the town – and to get our reward.
Linda decided to try her hand at skinning the great beast, and made a pretty horrible looking mess. She did manage to remove the head and the skin, but I think she wore half of the guts on her armor. “Down wind girl, Down Wind!” was a common chant on our way back to town – dragging the lizard head behind us.
We looked for our contact in town, the local Ombudsman “Bud”, to file our claim for the 1000 sp reward. We were just starting to celebrate, when he asked us how long ago we had killed it. “About an hour ago” we replied, “Why?”. “Because there has been another disturbance report – not 5 minutes ago!” he grumbled back at us.
Son of an Orc – we weren’t done here!
Before heading out to see where this latest report came from, we had a quick meal, and I took the time to update my journal.
===Journal Entry #21===
After a short break, we headed back towards the reported abduction. This time, it was a goat taken directly from a pen, while the farmer and his wife were nearby. Unfortunately, neither of the residents had direct eye contact with the pen during the alleged abduction. The farmer’s wife did report hearing a strange whistling sound, which she thought was being made by her husband, but he reported he was unable to whistle…
There were NO signs anywhere that another giant lizard was responsible, no tracks, no larger flattened areas. It was like the goat just ceased to exist.
I don’t recall why, but we headed back towards the corpse of the giant lizard we had killed earlier today, and noticed that the crowd of curious onlookers had since dispersed. We did notice that while the country bumpkins that had been there earlier were now gone, something else had taken their place… We spotted 2-3 large bee like creatures, approximately 5-10 feet in length. Some of the group wanted to attack them, but I held them back after convincing them that we should instead track them to their nest, in case there were more of them.
Not unexpectedly, my judgement proved correct, and after a short hike following them carrying their freshly sliced chunks of lizard meat, we ended up back at their nest.
This was the largest wasp type nest I had ever seen, and I hope to never see another one like it in my lifetime. The giant bees we had been tracking were now in a cluster of at least 8 bees hovering around the nest.
Getting rid of these bees and not being stung to death was going to be a tricky endeavor. I suggested catching the nest on fire, since I have seen how other (smaller!) nests being made out of paper, caught fire easily.
Auric made attempt after attempt, but was not having much luck lighting it afire from a safe distance. Linda meanwhile came up with the brilliant idea of casting a spell at the nest which created a spinning storm of knives.
The bees, being quite stupid beasts, attempted to attack the knives and succeeded in getting themselves sliced and diced. About this time, Auric finally succeeded in getting the nest ablaze.
One or more of the bees must have sent out an alarm via pheromones or something (not my specialty) and other giant bees answered the call and started converging onto the nest – and some even came after us!
We had a brief scuffle with the bees that came after us, but we prevailed with only minor injuries, no doubt due to my superior tactical instructions.
In the end, the bees were killed, and the nest was aflame and nearly burned out. We discussed the situation while keeping a wary eye out for any more stragglers headed for the nest, and decided that something or someone must be behind these aberrations of nature. In town we had learned of a wise woman, a witch who might be able to shed some light on this mystery. I’ll refer to her as “Baba Yaga” until I learn her true name.
She is very reclusive and is not seen around town much. I have a sneaking suspicion that she may in fact be behind these giant creatures – possibly due to an experiment that got out of hand, or maybe due to a more sinister purpose. It bears investigating. The group needs to decide if the current party should go calling on her, or if there are people in the manor house who might be better qualified to pay her a visit. That is a decision she shall make on the morrow, for today has been a long day, and we need to sup and catch some sack time.
==End 12/09/2016 Session Report==
==Session Report 12/23/2016==
===Journal Entry #22===
The day began with a hearty breakfast, as all good days should. I joined the others at the table, and quickly noticed the absence of [[Auric]]. I was informed that he had pressing business elsewhere, and would not be accompanying us on our search for the mysterious [[Witch of the Wood]]. There was a new face at the table, [[Nar]], a fellow Dwarf hailing from parts unknown. Judging by the axes Nar was armed with, he is either an out of work wood chopper, or someone who would be quite happy giving an Orc a very short haircut…
After we finished eating, Maya noticed [[Tom]] outside, and we ran out to question him before he could disappear again. After some skillful negotiating whereupon I convinced the others to cough up 5gp each to help buy Tom a sword as advance payment for his service to help find the Witch, we set off with a spring in our step to find her. Tom was quite pleased with his new sharp looking long sword – and promised to lead us to her as fast as he could.
Turns out that Tom runs a heckuva lot faster than we did – especially Nar and myself. I was determined not to allow the young whippersnapper to leave me behind, so legs a poundin’, I kept up with the best of ’em Truth be told, when the others would stop for a break, I only stopped also – since I wasn’t sure where we were going. I could have kept running all day without pause.
Tom led us deep into the nearby wood, and then asked us to wait, as he ran on ahead. I, being ever mindful of the time, waited 5 minutes or so, and then proceeded after Tom. Turns out, he had ran home to his shanty to pick up a few things – like his bow. Tom and I rejoined the group – and we again, set off at a breakneck pace searching high and low for the witch.
At one point, Tom (who had run ahead) shouted at us “Run!”. Not knowing what to expect, we dove into the nearby bushes to see what was coming. About 30 seconds later, we spotted what looked like a bear with the head of a bird! “It’s just a damn bear” I said and bravely strode out into the path – telling the bear to “Bring it on!”
Turns out – that bear wasn’t alone – it had two friends – two more bear/bird hybrids.
I shouted “It’s only some bears – we can handle this!”
A few minutes later, we’re surrounded by dead bears that someone had grafted bird heads onto. Tom chooses this time to return to us, and tells us that he had been running away from more of them and just now lost them.
Proceeding onward through the woods, we eventually come across a nice little homestead, where Tom pronounces “This is her place!”. After the long hike through the wood, we are all anxious to find her and ask her questions about the abominations we have encountered – and I’m still sure at this point – that she had something to do with it. Call it my intuition…
Walking cautiously up the path to the house, we can’t but notice that there is vegetables rotting on the vines. This is not looking good… We try looking through the windows – but can’t see inside due to the darkness. Throwing caution to the winds and declaring “I don’t have time for this nonsense”, I boldly open the front door and stride into the dwelling.
The kitchen seems to have been set for a dinner, there are settings for two people, and there is something hanging in the hearth – but it seems to have been burnt beyond recognition. At some time, it was probably a meat of some sort.
Sadly, we finally make the late witches acquaintance – she is laying on the floor and quite dead, and appears to have been dead for some time.