Jockra

Part XX, The Throne of King Bupgopgoorg

Back in Harrenshire, Targus finds himself once again beset with his duties as Steward. Darbeel, King Maryth’s Emissary, has arrived with a detachment of men-at-arms lead by Sir Geron. Darbeel informs the party that the King has fallen ill and will not be making the journey to Castle Targus, however Prince Obyr will still be coming in his stead. The castle is packed full of the refugees from the city of the Glass Pool, and shelter and food must be provided for them, further depleting the treasury.

Geron insists on accompanying the party on their return trip to the City of the Glass Pool. His assistance proves valuable as they gain forced entrance to the city and storm the Monitor barracks and the kuo-toan King’s palace. They slay King Bupgopgoorg in his throne room and have an intense running battle with his illithid “advisor” Ilsenzenden. They lay claim to a large measure of the city’s wealth in Bupgopgoorg’s treasure vault, and discover a permanent teleportation portal in the palace which enables them to once again retreat and regroup.

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Part XIX, Assault on the Palace of the Dukes

The party, with the assistance of Ando’s charmed derro, assaults the palace of the three kuo-toan dukes. Duke Hurlgaboorg gives them an especially hard fight, retreating to come back with reinforcements. Exhausted but victorious, the group barricades themselves in the palace while Ando opens a portal to escape to the safety of Harrenshire.

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Part XVIII, Battle at the Derro Barracks

The party lures the large contingent of derro stationed at the front gates into a battle in the main courtyard. Ando activates the Crown of Derro Command and controls a large group of them to fight for the party.

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Part XVII, The Lair of the Illithid Mastermind

Moving stealthily through the city streets and alleys, the party locates what they believe to be the residence of one or more mindflayers. They are admitted by a pair of thralls and once inside, the party confronts and defeats the powerful mindflayer mastermind Zanticor. A stone guardian statue defends the illithid treasure horde but it falls easily. Ando lays claim to a powerful magical artifact in Zanticor’s possession; one that could prove critically important in their attack on the city: The Crown of Derro Command.

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Part XVI, Into the City of the Glass Pool

Retracing their steps through derro territory, the party meets minimal resistance but must resort to some manual labor to clear a cave-in triggered by the derro intent on blocking their progress. They follow the tunnel through a secret door that emerges onto a ledge some 40 feet above the floor of a monstrous cavern. At last they have reached the City of the Glass Pool! Below them is a sprawling walled complex of many domed buildings.

The party decides to try entering the city posing as slavers from the surface with Okfaust and Ando as their “prisoners.” Their ruse fools the derro guarding the gates but their two compatriots are taken away at the instruction of an illithid. The party is offered food, temporary shelter, and payment in pearls. They subdue the derro watching over them in the barracks and using Carmeneren’s map, are able to discern which building is the prison. They have a brief skirmish with the kuo-toa jailors and find the prison is packed to overflowing with all manner of humanoid prisoners. Several are from Harrenshire, including a man-at-arms from Jeleneth’s party and Ando and Okfaust. Ando opens a magic portal linked to Castle Targus through which the prisoners escape to freedom. The party stays to begin their guerrilla attacks to reduce the city to chaos.

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Part XV, Return to Harrenshire

D’lar is slain during the heated battle with the derro chieftain and his savants. The party holes up in the derro throne room and must fight a holding action while Okfaust performs a ritual to preserve his body for later revival. Once completed, the party fights their way out and clears the rest of the stronghold before making a long journey back to the surface and the safety of Castle Targus. A svirfneblin messenger greets them as they pass through gnome territory, delivering a message from Carmeneren and a map of the City of the Glass Pool.

They spend several days recuperating at the keep while Okfaust raises D’lar at the sacred grove. During this time Targus learns that King Maryth II has responded to his message and plans to send additional troops to support Harrenshire. What he didn’t expect was the King’s intention to make a personal visit in a month’s time during a tour of his western fiefs. Meanwhile, Ando completes the final step of his costly spell research with Morin’s assistance; a permanent teleportation circle atop his tower. After re-supplying and giving instructions to make preparations for the King’s arrival, the party returns to the depths – this time straight to the teleportation circle in the grell caves via Ando’s linked portal ritual.

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Part XIV, The Derro Stronghold

The party continues its journey deeper and deeper into the depths, passing through all manner of wondrous caverns when they eventually have their first encounter with the derro. These small but tenacious underdark dwellers prove to be formidable opponents. First the party battles a patrol on the outskirts of diregund territory, but then they come upon a fortified watchpost which protects a bridged chasm. They storm the keep, and defeat a multitude of derro and illithids. On the far side of the fort the party finds a pair of tunnels. They follow the northern branch which seems to lead to the derro warrens. The party fights their way in past layers of defenses, crossbow traps, barricades, murder holes, and guards until they reach the inner sanctum of the derro savants and their chieftain.

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Part XIII, Caverns of the Great Reptiles

The party returns to the caverns of the great reptiles, marked on the gnome map. They fight an epic second battle against Azzuzir, and this time they are able to overcome the mighty behir. Morin is slain but the party recovers his remains to resurrect, however they lay claim to Azzuzir’s vast treasure hoard before departing for the gnome city. Okfaust is able to bring Morin back with the assistance of Carmeneren. Rested and re-equipped, the group heads back to see what lays beyond the behir’s lair. Hoping to find a sign of allies to aid them in their war on the underdark, they find instead the second of “the great reptiles,” a shadow dragon named Franduzsch. The dragon doggedly stalks the party, using the darkness to its advantage. At long last, battered and pierced by many arrows, the mighty beast is brought down. It’s treasure hoard rivals Azzuzir’s, yielding a huge cache of valuable magic items. The party is frustrated when they find further progress in this direction blocked by a cave-in.

The temple of Jubilex seems unavoidable on their path towards the City of the Glass Pool, so they approach it with great caution. Morin circumvents the trapped entrance and Ando magically forces their way inside. The temple is an unholy and alien place with writhing walls, blinking eyes, and gibbering mouths. Steeling themselves against the pure evil of the place, the party advances where they are ambushed by a pair of illithid. When Snagger tries to destroy the altar in the inner sanctum, they find it is host to a myriad of slimes and oozes, including a giant idol of Jubilex, which animates and attacks them. Victorious against the slimy onslaught, they set about cleansing the place with a ritual to rid it of its unholy taint. The way lies open for further progress into the depths.

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Part XII, The Green Dream

Okfaust and the others experience a mutually shared dream, as they relive the capture and imprisonment of the missing acolytes of the Green Brotherhood. The dream reveals the existence of one of the missing Scimitars of the Earth Father. It also increases their sense of urgency for rescuing the acolytes and finding out who is behind all these kidnappings. Following the clues in the dream, the party locates and slays the ogre-magi who stole it, hiding amongst a group of hook horrors. Okfaust takes rightful possession of the blade and wields it in the name of the Earth Father. The party returns to the gnome city to re-equip and plan their next foray.

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Part XI, Underdark Experience

Morin, Bart, Reginold, and Skodris pursue Polonus’ kidnappers deep beneath the earth into the underdark, where they meet up with Targus and company. After dispatching the trolls as tasked upon them by Carmeneren, they catch up with Haragswald and his band. They rescue Polonus, defeating the slavers and taking one prisoner. The party returns Polonus to the safety of his temple and questions their captive, Prentys. She reluctantly tells them that her group has been kidnapping spellcasters and selling them to illithids in the kuo-toan City of the Glass Pool that lies deep beneath Harrenshire. Why the illithids want these captives, she does not know, but they pay handsomely in pearls. Targus releases her on the condition she never returns to the valley. Morin agrees to stay on and help the party.

Targus must attend to some of his duties as Steward while back home at the castle. Bart, Reginold, and Skodris are promoted and they increase patrols. Guards are posted at the temple of Agan and the nearby sacred grove of Lowen, but the soldiers of Harrenshire are under-manned for the task of protecting the populace from further kidnappings. Targus dispatches letters to King Maryth II and his old garrison commander in Aras requesting more troops or reliable mercenaries to augment his men-at-arms. He also attends to the treasury with Frandris, finding that funds are running low after settling Ando’s accumulated debts and paying out wages and construction costs.

After a rest at the castle, the party returns to visit Carmeneren and the svirfneblin. She gives them more details about areas of the underdark, and the dangerous path to the City of the Glass Pool. Targus broaches the subject of opening trade between Harrenshire and the deep gnomes. Carmeneren seems amenable to the possibility once the immediate threats to the two communities have been resolved. The party first tries their luck against the “great reptiles” marked on the gnome map, but they are forced to retreat after a battle with a powerful behir. They opt instead to clear the more direct route towards the City of the Glass Pool, battling a colony of grell, as well as hook horrors and troglodytes along the way.

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