Carrion Crown Greyhawk

Session 5 (10 November)

After an eventful night, the team slept through the morning and arose around noon.

Relaxing in the town square near some musicians, Manx and Zemye were shocked to see 2 Stirges fly in and attack the group.

With all of the strange happenings in and around town, the townfolk were starting to panic. Answers were being demanded from the Council, who agreed to a Town Hall meeting that night.

The Town Hall meeting was a full house. The Hall itself was packed to capacity, and many more spilled outside, listening through the door. At the meeting, it was clear that the Council did not have a solid plan. Jayne proposed that the adventurers travel to Harrowstone and root out the cause of all of this trouble once and for all. The villagers were uncomfortable with the idea, and debating it when disaster struck.

All 5 of the lanterns lighting up the town hall suddenly burst and splashed oil across the walls nearby. The walls caught fire, and panic filled the room as the crowd fell over each other rushing for the exit. Worse, two flaming skulls burst in through the windows and flew over to attack people while the fires raged. The team managed to destroy the flaming skulls, then control and put out the fires while also co-ordinating the evacuation of the building and saving a few citizens who had succumbed to the fires.

At a followup meeting at Councillor Hearthmount’s house later, the council agreed to let the party investigate Harrowstone, and offered to pay them if they could solve the curse that had now descended on Ravengro.

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Session 4 (6 November)

After a good night’s sleep, the party took a wander in town. At The Laughing Demon inn, they met Mustafa, a stranger whose master had been a friend to Professor Lorrimor.

A visit to Jominda Fallenbridge’s apothecary introduced the adventurers to the Harrow Deck and a card reading known as a Harrowing. Unfortunately, the cards were not able to directly answer their very specific question (where is Vesorianna Hawkran right now?), so they left just as confused as before (though perhaps the cards have smiled on their fate in some way?)

The adventurers spent the night looking over the Harrowstone monument, with no incident. However, upon wandering into town the next morning, they discovered that a villager had been killed in the Town Square during the night, his throat ripped out. A witness (who was quite drunk at the time) spoke of a human shaped figure that then chased him until he escaped into the woods.

As news came that some graves in the cemetary had been disturbed overnight, the group came to the grim conclusion that the dead were rising and attacking the living. They resolved to stay at the cemetary that night, and asked Gibs Hephenus and his friends to look after the monument.

That night, the dead did indeed rise from their graves. 2 zombies and a skeleton rose up and were quickly put down again by Jayne, Zemye, Illura, some of the deputies and a few acolytes from the temple, sent by Father Grimburrow.

At the same time, Mustafa was staying with Gibs and his friends, watching the monument. When Gibs wandered off unexpectedly, Mustafa followed. Realising he was being followed, Gibs whirled around, seemingly possessed, and attacked Mustafa in a frenzy. Gibs’ friends and Manx all rushed to the scene and together they managed to subdue the old retired soldier. Upon regaining conciousness, Gibs could not remember anything of his ordeal.

In the morning, the team brought Gibs to the Ravengro Jail, where the sheriff agreed to keep him for his own safety for a while.

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Session 3 (27 October)

After Zemya managed to win over the confidence of the girls singing the ghastly skipping song, they told her that it had come to one of them one morning when they woke up. The girls were always coming up with verses to try to scare each other, but the similarity between the 5 Harrowstone prisoners over 50 years ago and these verses was uncanny.

The group was still unsure of whether to question Alendru Ghoroven about this, but decided not to quiz him about it just yet.

Further conversation with the old Dwarven woman Jorfa confirmed that Warden Hawkran and his wife Vesorianna were human, and she would be unlikely to be alive today if she had somehow escaped the fire.

The group returned to the Harrowstone memorial, checking everything thoroughly but finding no new leads. Eventually, they decided to head up in the late afternoon to Harrowstone itself to find out a bit more about the Warden’s house and the Harrowstone grounds themselves.

Harrowstone prison itself is an old, sagging building clearly showing the effects of time. The wall around the prison is mostly solid, though covered in ivy. One section of wall has crumbled into a small lake that seems to have formed since the fire. The warden’s house looked ready to collapse.

Fearing that agents of the Whispering Way may be occupying Harrowstone and watching their approach, the group approached cautiously and thought carefully about how to enter. Jayne entered through the front gate first (feeling a sudden rush of claustrophobia and burning), then met the others as they climbed over the ruined wall near the lake. Seeing no reaction from the house or the prison, they checked out the gatehouses at the entrance to the wall.

One of the gatehouses was infested with a swarm of large rats that poured out to attack everyone. A quick Color Spray spell from Manx quickly knocked them all out, and everyone set about squashing chopping and stabbing them until none remained.

The Warden’s house was completely empty, and began collapsing as Manx and Zemye rummaged around in it.

Eventually, the group moved up to the prison house itself, to look for the site of Professor Lorrimor’s death. While looking for this, they noticed that the grass and weeds around the base of the building had been cleared away and a series of runes had been carved into the base of the building and smeared with blood. This extended all the way around the building except for the corner submerged in the lake. They had trouble reading the runes themselves, but copied a sample to take home.

Not wishing to enter the building just yet, the group checked out the lake. Manx stepped into the lake briefly, but pulled back when Jayne detected evil creatures moving to the surface of the lake from its depths. Three skeletons rose from the muddy water, shambling ashore. As the mud sloughed from their yellowed bones, the bones began to blacken and smoulder. The group made quick work of these skeletons, whose bodies instantly stopped smouldering once they were destroyed.

Looking further into the lake with her Detect Evil ability, Jayne could see an entire graveyard of unquiet dead below. The party quickly backed away and, with the light beginning to fade, made their way back to town.

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Session 2 (13 October)

After visiting the (well equipped) smith in town, the companions heard a commotion outside. Following the crowd to the Harrowstone Memorial, they discovered that someone had painted a large ‘V’ in blood across the base of the monument. More blood was splattered across the monument and around the immediate area.

The group met with Father Grimburrow at the Temple of Wee-Jas, and convinced him to provide them with access to the temple’s library. There, they spent two days researching Harrowstone further, where they discovered that the fire that destroyed the prison was caused while trying to stop rioting prisoners from escaping. At the time of the riot, there were 5 particularly notorious criminals being held – Father Charlatan, the Lopper, the Mosswater Marauder, the Piper of Illmarsh and the Splatter Man.

The Splatter Man’s method of killing was of particular interest – he would spell out his victim’s name in blood one letter at a time over a period of a week or two before killing them. The party immediately sought out the names of everyone in town that started with a V. There were three main suspected targets – Councillor Vashian Hearthmount, Father Vauran Grimburrow, and Deputy Vrodish (who was one of the deputies that found the body of Petros Lorrimor).

Plans were made to keep all safe, until a second letter finally appeared. The ‘E’ scrawled in blood suggested that none of townsfolk were the target, but perhaps the perpetrator is trying to spell out the name of Vesorianna Hawkran, wife of prison Warden Hawkran and one of those that died in the fire?

What if Vesorianna in fact didn’t die in the fire? Or did the Splatter Man somehow escape? Could this just be a copycat? Or perhaps something altogether different?

As the new companions walked back to Kendra’s house pondering these questions, they heard a rather disturbing rhyme being sung by some girls playing skipping rope:

Put her body on the bed.
Take a knife and lop her head.
Watch the blood come out the pipe.
Feeds the Stirge, so nice and ripe.
Drops of red so sparkly bright.
Splatters spell her name just right.
With a hammer killed his wife.
Now he wants to claim your life.
Tricksy father tells a lie.
Listen close or you will die.

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Session 1 (30 Sep 2012)

An unlikely group of mourners gathered at the Restlands outside of the small town of Ravengro. Amongst the locals that knew Petros Lorrimor, a few outsiders had come to pay their respects. Amongst them were Illura Del Shar, Manx, Zemye and Jane.

After fighting off a group of superstitious local farmers, Petros’ body was able to be laid to rest. The outsiders were invited by Petros’ daughter, Kendra, back to the house to hear his will read. Within was a strange request – that the group stay in Ravengro for 30 days, then return a set of ‘dangerous’ tomes of knowledge to the University of Leipstadt.

The box that these tomes were contained contained another strange item – the professor’s journal, with several sections highlighted. The group of strangers began to guess that foul play may have been the result of Petros’ death, and set about investigating further.

Clues in the journal pointed to a false crypt in the cemetery that may hold tools to help in the investigation. The group quietly made their way there and broke in to the old crypt, finding a number of very useful tools for combating creatures of the night. Unfortunately, while in the crypt, the group were attacked by giant centipedes, and Jane was hurt badly by the poisonous bite of one of them.

The group returned back to the house and settled in for sleep, planning further investigation in the morning…

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