Symbaroum - Atlas of Secrets

Session 1 - Lost Currents

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The explorers each registered with Mother Mehira’s Agency in Thistle Hold. Under this contract, they were hired by the treasure hunter Levindra for an excursion into Davokar. The group, eight in total, set out several days later.

  • Levindra (Ambrian Female) – Treasure-Hunter
  • Kristomei (Ambrian Male) – Ranger
  • Dragoi (Ambrian Male) – Wizard
  • Rygal (Ambrian Male) – Captain
  • Donk (Ogre Male) – Berserker
  • Varia (Ambrian Female) – Fortune-Hunter/Sellsword
  • Baro (Ambrian Male) – Fortune-Hunter/Sellsword
  • Ylia (Goblin Female) – Fortune-Hunter/Scout

Ten days of travel, where they encountered fairies, barbarians, and natural dangers hidden in the dark forest, found them at the ruins of a city known as Marqash. Though once known for its network of canals, what little remained was a small collection of ruined structures and a few overgrown wet ditches.

It was determined that an old tower, three stories tall and still barely standing, would function as base. After running the flock of violings that had taken up nest within, the explorers dug in and made camp.

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Session 2 - Ossuary of the Watchers

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After setting up camp in the ruined city of Marqash, the explorers woke to find the fortune hunter Varia missing, dragged into the overgrown canals during the night. Setting out the find the abductor, they encountered three Kanaran, the corpses of which produced high quality scaly skin as well as the grim remains of their party member.

Exploration unearthed a hidden staircase leading into the ground. Within they found a large room decorated with neatly arranged rows of bones and skulls; each having a cuneiform celestial symbol carved into the forehead. Three sarcophagi sat in burial vaults, the skeletal remains wrapped in cloth and wearing a smoothly carved thin stone mask with a third eye instead of a mouth. It was learned that these masks burned the face when worn, but offered the ability to see through darkness.

Beyond the large room were three libraries lost to time, though several bronze copper plates were recovered. Each appears to be covered in religious symbols relating to the movement of the sun, the moon, and other celestial bodies. After making rubbings of the plates, spirits of the undead attacked from the bones; their wraith claws draining the soul with each swipe. Ylia, the goblin fortune-hunter, was found dead from these assailants.

A secret room was located, hidden behind several well concealed doors. Originally covered in intricate geometric patterns, a desecrating rite had been performed; making the room stink with corruption. Unable to resist the gnawing darkness within him, Baro was transformed into a hulking abomination of thick ropy tendrils. Though hard fought, the explorers were victorious against the blight born.

With full coffers and heavy spirits, they returned to Thistle Hold to gain their payment and a chance to relax from their time in Davokar. It was learned that their patron was none other than the Ordo Magica themselves, and future opportunity was to be had if they were willing.

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Session 3 - Twilight Crossroads

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Following up on their experiences in Davokar, the explorers arranged a meeting with the Ordo Magica. Master Eufrynda met them within the Ordo’s tower in Thistle Hold. From her they learned of The Watchful Eye and provided first-hand information on their delve into the Ossuary of the Watchers. The master wizard stressed interest in continuing to work with them once she had more leads from her field agents. In the meantime, she had a small errand for them which involved transporting a boxed item from Kodomar’s Huckery Blackmoor back to her.

After arranging travel to Blackmoor in the form of a cart, Kristomei learned their driver was having trouble getting residence within Thistle Hold. He offered 5 thaler to help the effort, in return for future use of the driver when needed. The explorers saw several Black Cloak wagons heading south around the same time, and exchanged rumors with their driver about them.

After the short travel across the rolling landscape of Narugor, they arrived in Blackmoor and made for the Black Square in the center, the location of Kodomar’s Huckery. Rygal happened upon an old contact from his hometown, a man by the name of Artolo. Down on his luck, Artolo seemed embarrassed by his current situation of living in the Garbage Heap district. Rygal offered him a few thaler to hopefully turn things around.

Kodomar was as described, a large outspoken barbarian trying to sell anything and everything. After spending some time inquiring about his wares, the explorers produced their official writ from Eufrynda and requested the item for transport. Securing the crate in Donk’s over-sized pack, the group started their return to Thistle Hold.

Prior to leaving Blackmoor, they noticed Artolo trailing them, seemingly wanting to talk further. Rygal met with him again in private and learned that Artolo’s sister, Brilda, was missing, and he seemed to be in some sort of trouble with a man by the name of Red Eye.

The explorers started asking around the Garbage Heap and eventually questioned Red Eye himself. The cripple offered little information, although Dragoi noticed an oddly rancid smell in the tent, and after quick observation, realized the wooden slats inside the tent were concealing something beneath. Red Eye seemed to have many supporters within the masses paying the group a lot of attention, concerning Kristomei about an ambush or a setup. With the information gained, they returned to Artolo and confronted him about what he was hiding. He fessed up that Red Eye took care of the forgotten people of the Garbage Heap, and in return asked for prayer to something called Ragama. After returning the crate they were sent for, Rygal agreed to return and help out where possible.

Back in Thistle Hold the group provided Eufrynda with the crate she requested, and asked questions about the name Ragama. Learning nothing of note, they decided to return under the cover of night and do further investigation. Entering Blackmoor in disguise, they infiltrated the Garbage Heap and were able to gain a discreet view of Red Eye in his tent stuffing a passed out body under the floorboards.

Jumping into action, Rygal, Donk, and Dragoi stormed the tend, while Kristomei took up a distant position. With a blade to his throat, Red Eye continued to be non-forthcoming with information, so Dragoi pulled up a floorboard, expecting to find a tunnel. Instead, he immediately faced a bloated abomination festering in an earthen pit, and screamed as corrupted larvae burst from his arm. Many Garbage Heap inhabitants started moving to the defense of Red Eye as all of this was going on, but were set back by arrows in the dark from Kristomei.

With the revelation that an abomination was in the city, Rygal tossed Red Eye into the pit as Dragoi blasted brimstone fire over and over again, killing Red Eye in the process. Donk reached up and pulled the tent down into the pit just as the abomination began to pull its way up. The fight spilled into the open as the blight beast advanced. Donk and Rygal held it in vicious hand to hand combat while Dragoi continued his torrent of brimstone and Kristomei worked to keep the cult followers from swarming them. Eventually the beast was slain, the cult dispersed, and the group faced many questions from the Blood Robe mercenary guards of Blackmoor. Rygal took command of the situation, tossed accusations, and was able to prove their vigilance. Artolo learned of his sisters likely disappearance within Red Eye’s tent, and her ultimate fate as a feast for the blight beast.

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Session 4 - The Line of Wisdom

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The Ordo Magica received word from a member operating out of Karo’s Fen of information seemingly related to The Watchful Eye. The wizard Sekiva learned of a large three-eyed statue in The Marshes from a barbarian willing to speak of such matters. The players were hired by Eufrynda to investigate.

Choosing a safe route, their travels took them east across the core of Ambria’s rolling landscape towards the town of Kastor. Spending the night in the Rusty Dragon, their tales of exploration in Davokar brought quite a crowd, and drinks were free. Dragoi learned a little bit of the town’s folklore before they headed towards the river Doudram.

Following the winding Doudram north the players once again found themselves in the forest of Davokar. Skirting the marshland as best they could, their path eventually brought them to the trade colony of Karo’s Fen and their contacts there.

Dragoi met with the changeling wizard Sekiva in the alchemical Ordo tower on the outskirts of town. A meeting was arranged with the barbarian Taramon who would be leading them into the swamp. At the designated hour, all parties met at The Crossed Candles where they learned of their route and the basics of the statue. A round of “Karo’s Special” was brought to the table, where Taramon goaded as many as he could into sampling the overly spicy crawdad dish. Only Donk and Dragoi rose to the challenge, the latter regretting his decision after a few bites.

The next day, all five persons headed out in Taramon’s flat bottom boat. They quickly found themselves engulfed in the blackness of the swamp, and its cacophony of sounds. Spontaneous flames from marsh gas seemed to be the most concerning, and extra care was taken to avoid the hazard. Etterherd spiders from the hanging moss was harder to avoid, although they proved to be only an annoyance.

Setting up camp on a strip of solid ground, Kristomei’s watchful eyes were alerted to dancing frostlights making their way towards the camp. The cold touch of death they offered woke those still sleeping and combat afterward was quick and decisive. Much of Rygal’s heat was sucked from him, and thankfully Dragoi was able to provide medical care to such unique wounds.

On the second day, they party reached the statue ruin, two stories tall, and leaning ominously in the marsh. Donk, Rygal, and Dragoi made their way into the base of the structure, where Symbaroum cuneiform drew their attention. Kristomei setup watch from the statue itself, and was startled by the sudden sounds of a crying human baby. This proved to be a ruse though, and four arrows were required to put down the dangerous dragon fly that assaulted him.

Finding nothing beyond knowledge in the form of a language they couldn’t translate, the explorers returned to Karo’s Fen with rubbings and a plaque in hopes of learning more. Sekiva and Dragoi worked to translate the Symbaroum words, and learned that the statue honored the birthplace of an astronomer by the name of Ilu-Kassat. They also found references to the Observatory of Kemish. More troubling though, they learned that some of the cuneiform was added after the original creation, and those symbols translated to what was believed to say “In the reign of knowledge, the line of wisdom ends.”

Working from this information, and utilizing the magic circle connection back to Thistle Hold, the Ordo Magica was able to piece together snippets of information previously thought to be unrelated. This work helped draw a rough location of the Observatory of Kemish in the foothills of The Ravens, north of the late in eastern Davokar.

The relative calm of Karo’s Fen was broken by a loud explosion, as several of them fire-oil shipments waiting to be loaded onto river boats were set alight. Soon, other fires started throughout the city, just as arrows started to fall. The Iron Pact had moved against the colony.

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