Senzar: Remnant

8th Session
The Courts of Arcturus

Age: The Second Age
Month: Knightfall
Week: Communion
Day: Starsday (last day of the month)

The PCs, now called the Paladins of the Dragon Peninsula, gathered together outside the gates of the great city Arcturus. A refugee camp at the walls showed how desperate life was beginning to get for the common people who were swept up in the great evacuation.

Within this camp, the Samantha was invited to a clandestine meeting with Father Hardstone from the Keep and an Starin Ranger known to Gor-sul. These NPCs informed her of a possible second exit strategy for leaving the continent should someone be cut off from the evacuation flotilla. This route called the Back Door is actually an entrance to an underground Khazak kingdom which has been magically sealed since the 1st Age. The spell will only open for a member of the Khazak Royal family by blood confirmation. Fr. Hardstone speculated that the door could be opened with a sample of actual blood from an ancestor, and he knew of where such a sample could be obtained. The ranger told Gor-sul of the location of the sealed door in the Krystal Myst Mountains.

This blood sample was stored inside of a vampire weapon in the private collection of the queen of Arcturus. The Paladins entered the city and began plotting a scheme to rob the queen. As Arcturus was a city where astrology was valued, Luna used her status as an Astromancer to gain entry to the queen’s palace for scouting. Elli made contact with the local thieves guild for additional intel.

On the night of the break-in, Silisarris used his spellsinger magic to mesmorize the guards at the palace’s entrance. The others infiltrated easily. Garanthandros found the queen in her throne room. He charmed her.

At this point, I had the players make a series of rolls to determine what random items were in the queen’s collection of magic items. They rolled very, very well. Their haul included three artifacts and many lesser magic items. Three artifacts: one vampiric great axe of Khazak forging, one vampiric sword of Demonian forging, and the staff of the overlord of Zengara. The Paladins ended up running away from the guards, but they had the queen traveling with them. They evacuated onto Garanthandros’ yacht and sailed into the night.

7th Session
Wyvern Bait, Part 1

This was a very short session roleplayed as filler after our other gamemaster ended his Dungeons and Dragons game session early.

Paladin Gor-sul returned to his clan. With his surviving cousin, Dave, at his side, he spotted his clan on the banks of the Dragon Peninsula and within the foothills of the Krystallmyst Mountains. He was surprised to see a bon fire, overland wagons, and a collection of Gargoyle-sized log cabins for his relatives.

Conversations commenced with NPCs. First, Gor-sul reported to his elder, Nana-Sul, that his cousin, Gary, had been killed. Then Gor-sul met the Archimage of Krystallmyst and recognized him as Sigil Talisman, the Starin wizard who he had met at the keep (in Session 1). Sigil explained that he had provided all the tribe would need for the journey including the cabins, but that he would no longer be able to help them after that night. Sigil also warned Gor-sul about a wyvern which was hunting in path that the Gargoyles intended to take around the mountains. Lastly, the archimage warned Gor-sul that he did not approve of the practice of soul thievery. Gor-sul responded respectfully.

Tasked with removing the dangerous pest before the clan could proceed, Gor-sul selected his cousin and his mentor to accompany him into the pass in search of the wyvern before it attracts more of its loathsome species.

6th Session
A Three Hour Tour, A Three Hour Tour

Age: The Second Age
Month: Still
Week: Communion
Day: Starsday (last day of the month)

This session’s theme music is Inn of the Weeping Sparrow by Midnight Syndicate

In the city-state of Mar the paladins Thael-has and Garanthandros had remained to study and practice their art of Necromacy. For Garanthadros, the T’eel Ranger, this meant overcoming a bought of depression and paranoia which resulted when he realized that he had reached second level. Thael-has had to drag him out of his house and sit him in front of their new teacher. Whereas Garanthadros studied Necromacy spells exclusively, Thael-has split his time between learning Necromancy in practice (2nd Order Spells) and theory (gaining the Inventor special power) with practicing Mysticm with the city’s many Mystic Warriors (2nd Order Mysticsm Spells).

Their studies were interrupted by a visit from Garanthadros’ contact in the city and an old family friend, Baron Black. The Human came to them because the other paladins had been identified as the thieves who stole the baron’s yacht. Garanthadros pledged to return the boat to the baron. The paladins already knew that Samantha, Elli, Luna, and Silisarris had been sent on a quest to the city-state of Tornharm, but they were a week late in returning. The Ranger packed his own yacht in preparation for retracing their steps, but it was decided that perhaps their new teacher could help. Indeed, the teacher was able to locate the missing Paladins and indicated that they were in the Sea of Stars, hundreds of miles off course and near the legendary island of Nazar Eth. The teacher opened a Stargate to that location and sent them through.

Days earlier, the missing paladins were sailing back to Mar when they were struck by a freak weather phenomenon called a Wild Wind. The storm blew them far to the north and wrecked their boat on a desolate island of rocks and bird nests. Samantha was missing, but the Elli the Rogue, Luna the Astromancer, and Silisarris the Spell Singer were safely on the island with the sailor. Their boat, salvaged from Tornharm, was demolished.

With some misadventure, the paladins reunited: Garanthadros, Thael-has, and Siliarris. Elli and Luna had given into their wanderlust and were exploring the island. While raiding a bird’s nest, they met a refugee from another ship wreck. Closer investigation revealed that a longship of the Raiders had also been shipwrecked. Elli freed a trio of prisoners and escorted them to the wreck of the Tornharm ship.

The reunion of the five paladins was cut short by a scream. Salisarris tracked the noise to a blood stained rock on the other side of the island. He returned to report and then excused himself so he could fly into a low hanging cloud and do profane things with one of the freed slave girls.

Elli lead the others to the longship. They found little loot there other than some semi-precious stones and a single pearl. They did, however, find the body of a single Jotan giant, frozen solid on the deck. While they were searching the longship, Salisarris was interrupted by a large dragon which flew past him and pushed him out of a cloud. Salisarris reported what he had seen, and Elli identified the creature as an Ice Dragon.

{Creator’s note: The Ice Dragon was a randomly rolled encounter. Since the paladins would have stood little chance fighting it and seeing as how the dragon would have little interest in fighting them, I called for a different roll.}

Salisarris decided to try flying to the island of Nazar Eth on the horizon. Nazar Eth is a large island state created for the immortal race which came to be known as Nazar Ethans. The island is cut off from the rest of the world because the Nazar Ethans were decided to be too perfect by the divine god Cthon, and now the island is locked within a wall of fire. The only known way to bypass the wall is traveling underneath the surface through the Midnight Realm.

While Salisarris was gone, the other four paladins investigated the sound of another scream. They found the bloody arm of another slave girl on the western beach. While discussing what to do next, they were attacked by three feral trolls. The trolls emerged from hidden cave entrances (holes really) underneath boulders. The trolls lacked the stealth for a successful ambush, but their ferocity and long legs allowed them to close on their targets quickly nonetheless.

A hard fight ensued which exhausted the paladins of nearly all of their power points and a few of their fate points. Elli’s Luckster abilities proved true, allowing her to avoid many slashing attacks without a scratch. Garanthadros and Thael’has put their new knowledge of necromacy to good use by summon Infernal Armors which blunted the claws of the trolls greatly, but Thael’has still suffered a tremendous pummeling. Thael’has used his Mysticism to drive one of the trolls away and keep it pushed back for a time while Luna, Elli, and Garanthadros hammered the other two. When Luna’s energy was entirely exhausted, she used her magic carpet to retreat to a safer distance straight up. Thael’has also made a strategic retreat late in the battle by plane-stepping into the Shadow Sphere. Elli brought down a troll with her Gaunlets of Might, striking so hard as to chip and warp her bronze short sword. Garanthadros killed a second troll with his trident. The last remaining troll escaped into its hole, a short sword buried into its back.

After the fight, Garanthadros took decisive actions. Understanding from his nature lore that these monsters could possibly regenerate, he chopped up the bodies and tossed the parts into the sea for sharks to devour. While doing this, both Thael’has and Salisarris returned. The Spell Singer reported that he had discovered a way into Nazar Eth. Some debate occurred about whether or not to go there, but Garanthadros demanded an immediate return to Mar.

The paladins rigged up a transportation mechanism. A fishing net was suspended from underneath Luna’s flying carpet. With the aid of a Navigation spell cast by Luna, the paladins were able to plot a course back to the city of Mar, as the gull flies.

Important NPCs:
Baron Black
the sailor with the hooked hand

Fifth Session
The Living City and The Dead City

This session’s theme music is Black Wood by Midnight Syndicate:

Age: The Second Age
Month: last week of Harvestfest through the first week of Still
Weeks: Courtship through Communion
Day: all

The PCs spent a couple of weeks of downtime in the city of Mar. While there, Samantha made contacts with the master of the city’s largest Black Wyrm training facility where she learned new martial arts techniques to aid her personal goal of becoming the deadliest assassin. Meanwhile, Elli recruited Salisisaris and Luna to steal a magic instrument called an Open Chime from a different dojo.

During the second week, Gor-sul reunited with the rest of the party very briefly. Bringing his two cousins with him, they landed in Mar. He conspired with Samantha to perform an assassination of Gor-sul’s cousin, Gary. After drugging Gary to incite a frenzy, Gor-sul clawed his rival to death and claimed self-defense for the action. The third Gargoyle, Dave, blamed the influence of the city for Gary’s madness and the violence which resulted. The two remaining Gargoyles flew away to return to their tribe.

By the end of the second week, the Paladins had accepted an assignment from Red Brown to journey to the farther western city of Tornharm. The goal of the quest was to obtain seeds of a food called muscle fruit for Red to bring with him during the evacuation. Unable to find the their Teel companion or identify which boat was his, they stole a random yatch from the harbor of Mar and recruited a local fisherman to skipper it for them.

Age: The Second Age
Month: Still
Week: Departure and Courtship
Day: Sabbath and Moonsday

During the month of Still in the third week, Courtship when the moons hang close to one another, the Paladins arrived at Tornharm. The city seems abandoned. An areal scouting revealed that much damage had occurred in the streets, but the city seemed remarkably free from looting.

They first visited the lighthouse to light the oil there and to procure the reknowned Shatterhorn mounted in that tower. While working, they were stalked and ambushed by a lone velociraptor. This was a very unexpected monster, but Siliarisis and Elli put up a valiant fight and managed to slay the monster. As the reptile collapsed dying, they heard other raptors roaring in response across the city. Silisaris flew the Shatterhorn back to the yacht and Elli retreated to the city walls to hide. Samantha found Elli there and carried her back to relative safety of the harbor while narrowly being missed by a pouncing second raptor.

The paladins decided to remain on the yacht through the night and explore Tornharm further the next day.

Shortly before dawn, the yacht was scuttled and sank in the harbor. Evacuating to the docks, they left the sailor there to piece together another boat from the damaged ships which were docked there. Elli and Salisarisis went to the market together in search of seeds and loot. Samantha and Luna went to the city’s well known library in order to salvage whatever magickal knowledge could be preserved.

The Paladins in the marketplace avoided another ambush by a pack of raptors and a mysterious figure who might have been working with the raptors. Only Elli caught sight of the figure before he vanished again — tall, muscular, and with four arms. Based on her description, Salisarisis identified the stalking figure as an Azarr, a race of mutant giants who are known to live in the jungle trees of the Great Rift.

The Paladins in the library decided to spend as much time as they could, all day in fact, combing through the library’s archives. They managed to salvage several valuable books and an entire chest full of muscle fruit seeds. The Paladins only stopped when they realized that they were being hunted by a pack of raptors deep inside the library. Luna used a spell that she had learned from Salisarisis — Suggestion — to divert the alpha of the raptor pack away from them. The tactic worked just long enough for the Paladins to get outside.

The two groups reunited and saw that they were being surrounded by raptors. The paladins fought bravely in a savage fight. Elli, the tiny thief, put her freshly pilfered Gauntlets of Giant Strength to good use. The paladins won a decisive victory.

Out of game: That last fight was shorted to a single dice roll from each player because it was time for the session to end.

The paladins claimed their new boat and sailed out of the harbor of Tornharm as the sun set and the light in the light house winked out.

Fourth Session
Gargoyles in the Mist

This session was problematic in a very meta-gaming way. Within an hour of starting, we lost two players as one became sick and another simply fell asleep. The remaining players struggled to accomplish anything, but infighting and dice rolls hampered them. Also, the recording of the session was lost while the file was being saved.

Age: The Second Age
Month: Harvestfest
Week: Reunion
Day: Firesday

Gor-sul, the freshly knighted paladin, had spent nearly a week flying towards his home on the remote island of Thrax. When he returned to his village, he was greeted by many Gargoylean hatchlings and the village elder, a matron named Nana-sul, and the other adults of the clan. Not all of the adults were pleased to see him nor impressed by his title.

Gor-sul attempted to persuade his kin to follow him to Zengara for the great evacuation. He was challenged by a young rival in the form of a Gargoylean Warrior named Gary. Gary, being a recent convert to Silestian faith of the Phoenix Pantheon, bickered. Gary’s strategy was remain where they were and join forces with the invading Silestians. In order to settle the matter, Nana-sul declared that the Great Spirit would decide and gave all of the young warriors a quest. An outbreak of foot rot was running rampant in the village, so whomever could bring a certain healer to the village would decide the fate of the clan.

The healer was known only as the Hag of the Cavern, a mysterious figure who had lived near the village for nearly two hundred years. All of the young warriors went together to fetch the priestess. Gor-sul entered the cavern first and encountered a guardian monster, a Shrieking Shroom. This particular monster ambushes its victims when it detects the presence of magick, but since none was active, the Gargoyles were able to simply walk past it without harm. Deeper into the cavern, they found the home of an Arachnoid-Woman. The spider-like character was recognized by their furnishings as a priestess of Cthon who was actively practicing the Dark Earth faith. After some negotiation, the priestess agreed to heal the village for the price of Gor-sul’s magick wooden chest and all of his silver coins.

During the return to the village, an argument inadvertently triggered an obsession in another warrior, David.. The warrior acted rashly and struck out at Gor-sul. All of the Gargoylean warriors began fighting, more with words than claws, but fighting. As Gary and Gor-sul’s fight became the most heated, David lead the priestess to the village. As David was the first to complete her quest, Nana-sul recognized David as the individual who would decide the fate of the clan.

David was not convinced by either Gor-sul’s plan nor Gary’s plan. The Gargoyles decided to travel to the meet the military leaders of both sides. Gary lead David and Gor-sul east on a flight towards the front of the Silestian Invasion.

The two day flight was not uneventful. The three Gargoyles encountered first a freak weather phenomenon in the form of a spatial disburance that pulled them into the Shadow Sphere for a few seconds. Then they encountered an Azaar spy who attacked them from a range but soon disengaged. They faced very little actual danger on their mission.

When they arrived at the walls of the city of Errbor, they found it under siege by a large and organized army of Shy’r Warriors backed by a war fleet in the nearby water. The Gargoyles were greeted by Silestian and Solarr officers. As Gary translated, the officers granted safety to the Gargoyle clan so long as all members converted to the Phoenix Pantheon. The general even offered Gary a command of his own squad.

The Gargoyles were outside discussing these developments when the gates to Errbor opened and the populace exited. A Silestian soldier explained that the city had surrendered and agreed to convert. The invaders, however, did not have supplies adequate for so many prisoners, so the residents were marched into the sea as a form of mass execution. Gor-sul was infuriated by what they were witnessing and left immediately.

Gor-sul returned to the village first and began organizing move to join the evacuation. He was joined by his mentor, a retired Gargoylean Warrior who lived alone. Gary and David returned to see the village packing for a move. The same argument erupted again. Nana-sul advised David to continue to mission by meeting the humans at Zengara, and Gary was asked to return to the Silestians where he could possibly act in the clan’s interest from inside the invaders’ military. Gor-sul offered to lead David there.

Third Session
The Village of Fishbreath

Age: The Second Age
Month: Harvestfest
Week: Departure
Day: Starsday

The paladins took several days crossing the rolling hills of the Plains on their way to the city of Mar. After nearly a week on the road, they came to a small fishing village on the northern coast where their horses absolutely needed some rest, water, and fresh oats.

The fishing village was Fishbreath, a odorous ghetto of Goblins who were not allowed to live in the nearby city. The recent tremor suggested They introduced themselves to a goblin priestess who oversaw a small agnostic temple there. The paladins found different places to settle down.

During the night, a thick fog rolled into from sea. While Luna and Elli were still awake (drinking), the noticed a magick component to the fog bank. When they were outside investigating, they were the first to witness a small but sophisticated raid being performed against the village.

Two Akir raiders — half-breeds of the larger Jotun Giants — were entering the community using the cover of fog and a spell called Stealth of the Wolf. The raiders had utilized multiple distractions; they set fire to some of the damaged houses and also used a summoned giant crab which attacked Goblin villagers.

The ranger, who was sleeping in the water, awoke immediately at the sound of screaming. The others in the temple roused quickly afterward. The Akir raiders were seen carrying captive goblins into their landing boat. The paladins surrounded and fought the two raiders to the death with the aid of the Goblin priestess. Thael’has the mystic managed to dodge evade serious damage by escaping into the Shadow Sphere momentarily, and while there, he observed the soul of a killed goblin pulled from the Prime. Silisarrus the spellsinger was injured by a wicked slice of a raider’s sword, but next he used his talisman ability to gather and refocus magic energy to destroy the raider’s boat (along with destroying the captives). Garanthandros the ranger pursued the last surviving raider into the sea and skewered the invader to death.

Immediately after the death of the two raiders, Silisarrus observed a huge fleet of raiders farther out to sea and obscured by the fog. The huge fleet traveled east parallel to the coast. Silisarrus called for the paladins to leave the village immediately. This announcement was echoed by the priestess calling to entirely evacuate the village. A full panic occurred, including an attempted robbery of the paladin’s horses which was foiled by Garanthandros’ fleet feet.

The paladins quickly returned to the road and left the village behind them in the darkness of the night. By sunrise, they reached the walls of the city of Mar. In the morning light, they recognized and were reunited with Samantha the assassin.

At the gate, a guard told the group that the Kalamari, Thael’has the mystic, was not welcome. The group mentioned that they were paladins, and the guard recognized this title. He directed them towards the “house of the paladin” inside the city. At that house, they met a Tuaran named Red Brown who was on his own saving remnant quest to secure samples of seeds from all parts of the Dragon’s Peninsula. Elli the thief took credit for all that the group had accomplished and some what they did not. Red fed the group and agreed to show them the way to their contact in the city, Baron Black.

Luna the astromancer had used her runecaster ability to instantly learn nine new spells which she had observed during the adventure.

Second Session
A Legacy of Sneak Attacks

On Tuesday, we played another short session, about two hours long. The Drakan Assassin named Samantha Fatalstrike was the only player-character involved, and I handed out NPCs for the rest of the players to roleplay. These character sheets were distributed randomly.

terminology: Drakans are winged lizard-people who live in the mountain ranges of Senzar. Starin are a race of elves who are found everywhere and roughly equivalent to wood elves in other fantasy settings. Goblins are big, tusk-toothed, and smelly.

The NPCs distributed were: Susan (Drakan Warrior), Zander (Drakan 1st level nothing), Master (Starin 10th level Assassin), the Goblin tribe leader (3rd level Witch), the Goblin fighter (1st level warrior), and the pet Venom Squirrel (monster with a Kill Factor of 2)

Samantha, recently knighted as a Paladin of the Kingdom of Tarot, chose her own family as the thing she would preserve during the evacuation of the Dragon’s Peninsula. She flew to her family’s home in the Krystallmyst Mountains in order to lead her family to the evacuation site. She was received by her personal servant (now a squire) and her mother, both Dracans. The player who controlled the mother-character was the real life daughter of Samantha’s player, and the mother’s player seemed to enjoy the role-reversal. Shortly after Samantha’s arrival, her mentor who had taught her the skills of an assassin, arrived. This mentor was an elderly Starin.

While they were arguing about whether or not to leave their homestead, Zander the squire found Samantha’s handmaiden dead outside. The handmaiden had died from a disease of some type, but none of the characters made a successful skill roll needed to identify it. The cause of death was actually the witch’s black curse spell. Searching for more victims, Zander also found that the family’s chickens had been killed by some sort of animal attack. This cause of death was correctly identified as the bite of a venom squirrel.

As the family was packing, a tribe of Goblins attacked the family estate. They broke through the front door and immediately smashed a statue of Samantha’s late father. The Witch and the Venom Squirrel followed the rush of a dozen Goblin Warriors into the manor’s entry hall.

The Drakans and the Starin sprang into action. Samantha attacked first by dropping from a balcony and nearly killing one of the Goblins with her katana. Zander followed immediately behind her, clawing at a second Goblin. The Master used a combination of two martial arts techniques, Spider-Climb and Silent Strike, to kill a third Goblin with a garrote. Susan, the mother, charged into combat swinging her heirloom weapon, a heavy mace called a Drakan Fyst, at the Goblin who had smashed the statue.

Another round of combat later, two more Goblin Warriors were killed. The Venom Squirrel’s biting attack against Samantha was rebuffed by a lucky roll to parry which swatted the rodent away. The Master was quick enough to prep a dagger with dragon’s blood poison and stab the Goblin Witch with it. The Witch still had a few hit points left from the stab, but not nearly enough to survive the poison. I ruled that the poison would inflict its damage at the end of the round.

The Witch used his last breath to cast a black curse (the same spell which had killed the handmaiden) and drew upon the power points of the remaining Goblins to boost the area of effect. Witchcraft spells in Senzar 2nd edition do get a saving throw, and that is the primary advantage of the witches. Every character within the hall collapsed from crippling muscle pains, nausea, and painful black skin sores. Samantha survived only by spending a Fate Point to half the damage she received. Susan (mother of Samantha) and the Master survived simply by having adequate hit points to loose. All of the remaining Goblins, Zander, and the Venom Squirrel were killed by the black curse hex.

In the aftermath, the Master treated the survivors as best as he could using his Healing Arts Skill. He also found a sheepskin scroll written in the Sidhe language and the Witch’s handwriting, which explained how the tribe were refugees who had been displaced by an invading army of golden-skinned elves and had fled into the mountains. The remaining three characters decided to put the Master on a donkey, gather a larger group of travelers from a nearby village, and walk out of the mountains together.

Samantha Fatalstrike achieved second level and was awarded a new Fate Point for achieving her quest goal of evacuating her saving remnant. A lesser amount of experience was awarded the other players and applied to their PCs.

1st Session
Truely, the gods have forsaken us.

Age: The Second Age
Month: Harvestfest
Week: Departure
Day: Sabbath

Shadows fall over the Dragon’s Peninsula. Raiders tear asunder sailing ships and loot villages on the northern coast. Fanatical elves with strange magicks and powerful warships invade from the east. From the continent to the west, waves of barbarians on monster mounts crush hundreds of small kingdoms under their feet. Strange and dangerous weather events seem to occur more frequently and with increasing severity. Although the end of civilization draws near, Lady Teapot has a plan.

Called to the lady’s Keep in the Plains of Lotarr, seven talented individuals are warned of the looming threats on three fronts. These agents are inexperienced but uniquely talented. They are also informed that the Overlord of Zengara intends to evacuate his entire city-state along with all other survivors in one year’s time. The archmage of the Krystallmyst Mountains offers his support but warns that he will not become directly involved as other responsibilities require his involvement. The big question is not how to fight the invaders but who and what deserves preservation.

This is where the seven adventurers are needed. Each is knighted and given the title of Paladin of Tarot by her majesty, Lady Teapot. Each paladin is granted the authority of choosing what he or she deems important. They must, working separately or together, acquire these items (or people), protect them, and bring them to Zengara.

Two paladins immediately decided to fly to their own homes and fetch their families. Samantha is a high-flying Dracan, trained as an assassin and gifted with the talent of shapeshifting. She seeks out her family in the Krystalmist Mountains (also known as the Dragon’s Spine). The towering Gor-sul is a Gargoyle sell-sword with an fearsome power to feed on the souls of the enemies he kills. He seeks to relocate his entire home village from the island-state of Thrax. Both fly over the Krystallmyst Mountains and witness tremendous avalanches in the valleys beneath them.

Meanwhile, the other five paladins decide to travel overland together. They set out westward across the Plains of Lotarr on horses and in a carriage. Their destination is the city of Mar, a trading port ruled by a cabal of merchant-kings. This is also the location of the ranger’s docked sailing yacht. Within hours of road travel, their journey is interrupted by a minor earthquake which spooks their horses but creates no significant damage.

NPCs introduced
Lady Teapot, a minor feudal monarch who calls her territory Tarot
Girl, a lady-in-waiting who never speaks
Sigil Talisman, legendary archimage of Krystalmist
Nolak the Blind, overlord of the city-state of Zengara
Father Hardstone, dwarven priest of the Grim Grey Gods

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