|Common, Gnomish, Primordial
|Place of Birth
Heli Moltenshield is Fire Genasi Battlesmith Artificer hoping to make a name for herself by offering her trade skills to the Tempest Brothers Expeditionary Company.
Physical Appearance[edit | edit source]
Heli is a diminutive human-looking genasi who stands at only 3' tall but she appears a little shorter as she tends to walk with a hunch. Her ashen gray skin covers well toned muscles developed over a life of manual labor. Her hair naturally grows in a flame-like pattern, the roots a bright red/orange that grows out and transitions into black, the very tips fading to a smoky grey. Whenever she is channeling her magic or experiencing strong emotions her hair seems to dance like an open flame.
From both of her wrists sprout red and orange crystalline clusters that seem to dance with firelight. Her right arm terminates in a stump that seems to have grown over with those same crystals which seem to have grown into and over her metal hand. Her custom made prosthetic hand is made of sheets of blackened metal covering crystalline braided wires that act as stand-ins for muscle.
The previously mentioned crystals seem to be the main outlet for her natural fire affinity and dance with inner flames whenever she channels her fire-based abilities or is close to an open flame.
Personality[edit | edit source]
Heli has difficulty with social interactions, spending her formative year being kept at a distance by most people due to her proclivity for accidentally setting things on fire has made life difficult and because of this her life as been consumed by her trade. She does her best to be kind whenever she can but can easily be overwhelmed in social situations yet if you get her focused on a project or her creations and she can babble for hours.
History[edit | edit source]
Infancy:[edit | edit source]
Heli has very little idea where she originally came from. Through many of her adventures she has managed to piece together bits and pieces of her life. Growing up, there was no keeping it secret that she was adopted, and her gnomish parents had told her that she had been born in the town of Nestle. The identities of her birth parents are completely unknown due to her being found as an infant in the charred remains of an unremarkable home. No insurance claims were placed, and nobody ever came to claim the child so she was placed into an orphanage... Which burned down within the month with thankfully no casualties, and only a handful of injuries... This time, there were witnesses to link the dark skinned infant, in the throes of a crying fit, was the origin of the flames... Upon realizing what she was there had been much debate between the Stockmans as to what to do with her. Some had demanded her execution, as her very existence was a violation of Nestle's "No fire magic within 5 miles of the city limits" law. Many of the stockmans agreed that she was in violation of the law, but couldn't ethically condone the killing of an infant. Thankfully, a group of gnomish tinkerers from one of the other towns had been visiting to sell some of their new harvesting gadgets and heard about the lone infant and the controversy behind her. Being from the distant settlement of Gravel Peak they had offered to take the child far away and settle this dispute. So the very next day, they set off for home with a newly adopted child as part of their caravan... Their main carriage now inscribed with multiple fire-resistant runes.
Childhood:[edit | edit source]
Thankfully, Heli's new home was significantly less flammable than where she had been born so she was actually given the opportunity to learn how to control her natural gifts, her parents teaching her that everybody's gifts have a place but they have to be utilized properly. Once she was able to speak they found her a sorcerer to coach her through controlling her powers, and although she never progressed much further than creating small flames, or just letting the fire all out in one large burst magic was beyond her reach.
Each year that passed made her less and less likely to wake up with charred spots on her sheets as more and more crystals started to grow from her flesh, and over time she realized that the more she kept her fire inside, the more crystals she'd grow, often time in unpleasant locations. Unfortunately, each year also made door frames harder to get through as she quickly outgrew most of the other kids her age... Such was the curse of being part human in a mostly gnome and dwarf settlement. Nearly every day she would end up with a new lump on her head either from walking into a low doorframe or standing up too far and smacking against a low ceiling. The constant need to duck her head led to her naturally developing a hunched posture and a rather drastic flinch response to anything brushing against her hair which her older fraternal twin gnome siblings loved to exploit. Beyond the occasional teasing, she had actually been a fairly popular child growing up. Her talent for making little trinkets and toys attracting a lot of attention from the other children
as did her skill for reaching higher caverns and cubbies to hide things they didnt want the adults finding.
Teenage years:[edit | edit source]
As she came of age she discovered her love for architecture and crafting in general. Her skills had started as little mechanical toys made from the scraps from her father's projects .Something about the way the cogs fit together, teeth linking with the next to rotate it... How every cog, no matter the size, had a purpose. Each piece having a vital role in making the gadget work and if even one cog didn't fit just right, the whole system would grind to a halt. The moment she was old enough she became a smith's apprentice. Entranced by the flames of the forge, her mere presence causing the flames to burn brighter, the metal became like clay in the roaring fire as she became engrossed with the act of making. It was as if she could see the creation that the metal was meant to be and all she had to do was release it from the slag that surrounded it. But as teenagers were prone to doing, she became too cocky. Her powers making her feel like she was invincible, prone to making the flames too high... the metal too hot... And her control too loose... until she finally learned the important lesson that starting fires was easy, but dousing them was much, much harder... It just took a slip of concentration, the oil too close to the flames, the coal not properly stowed... And the smithy was up in flames, the tools warped beyond repair, and the forge itself requiring extensive repair after the fire was extinguished.
The loss of the forge was an important life lesson of how easily flames can run rampant... And as an example she was informed of her origin, how the emotions of an infant had caused so much destruction... And to hopefully help her learn this fact, she was sent to the outskirts of the settlement to study with the carpenters, taught finesse rather than force for creation. No dancing flames to make the materials pliable and easy to shape, only her hands and her tools to sculpt her vision. It was here she learned to properly plan, "Measure twice, cut once" her mentor always preached. Unlike metal if she cut off too much she couldn't stretch the wood to meet her requirements. This taught her patience and focus.
Early Adulthood:[edit | edit source]
By the time she came of age, she had mastered the professions of her youth. She had become known as an accomplished carpenter as well as smith... But she grew bored. There was nothing more she could learn of those crafts in her small town, and therefore she looked for new horizons. A period of dabbling in jewel working led to learning about enchanting. So many magical languages out there to study, and Primordial just seemed to come to her naturally. It was as if she could see the magic flowing through the letters as they were written, and while she couldn't use the magic directly, as she put the words on items she could create various effects. It took a good bit of trial and error, but eventually she thought she had it figured out.
The first attempt, was a simple steel buckler, one that she had smithed herself. A pattern she had done countless times for the town guard, or traveling adventurers passing through, or to send with her family as they visited Nestle. She etched into it many runes that she thought would help the tempering. That would strengthen the metal and make it unbreakable. So sure of herself, she forgot her many lessons and strapped the buckler on, pulling off one of her crystals and setting it in the center of the shield, feeling downright triumphant as the flames pulsed over it's surface, a dull glow emanating from it as she felt her inner magic enter the steel, flowing like a river. The river's power grew, and grew, turning to rapids as the steel turned orange, then yellow, and then a molten white as it began to lose it's form, droplets of molten metal falling from it to drip on her skin, dribbling between her crystals to scorch her skin. Blinded by pain, all she could think to do was remove the shield, leading to her frantically clawing at it, her fingers sinking into the molten steel and cooking the flesh as she frantically tried to escape the pain. By the time the buckles holding the shield on melted and the metal slag fell away her right hand was already mangled beyond repair and had to be amputated, her left arm had thankfully only sustained burns that could be treated, the crystals seeming to have protected her arm from the worst of the damage. Mockingly, many of the townsfolk had come to refer to her mockingly as "Moltenshield".
The accident had sent her into a deep depressive spiral as she struggled to do the tasks that had been so simple before. The stump of her right arm a constant reminder of her mistakes and failings. A few years passed with her barely able to pursue the crafts she loved, working instead as a designer rather than a creator and she hated it. But thankfully, a traveling group of adventurers passed through one day, and among their numbers was one of the storied machine men. She had heard of sentient constructs before but had never seen one, and she was absolutely fascinated by him. After significant persuasion, and a not so small donation the war forged allowed her to study him, and everything she had been attempting in the past suddenly made sense.
Her next project took significantly longer than it should have with her having to use her non-dominant hand, but piece by piece, she managed to use what she had learned from the warforged to construct a new hand. Crystal infused cables linking to the newly formed crystal of her wrist-nub allowed her to feel with the metal plates of the hand as if it were her own skin... If she could create this, what could she build next?
Artificer's best friend[edit | edit source]
The next step on Heli's journey to become a master crafter was to attempt to replicate the mechanical man! Every bit of crafting skill she had learned up until this point, every book on magic she had read and memorized, multiple valuable gems cut in very specific arcane patterns, a mile of crystal embedded steel cables braided into thick metallic muscle and a few hundred pounds of assorted metal plates and bars gradually became the hulking metallic beast that she dubbed Brokkr, after a smith of legend from one of the many stories she had read.
After rebuilding herself and building a friend, she finally left to adventure on her own, primarily traveling to regions that had suffered natural disasters or monster attacks to help them rebuild, only rarely encountering the monsters herself. During one such adventure, she had inadvertently rescued a Djinni who granted her one of the greatest gifts any mortal could receive: A Wish. Not knowing what to use it for, she attempted to save it... Returning home to avoid accidentally saying the words "I wish" which just hastened her doom. Within an hour of returning to her adoptive gnomish parents home, she bashed her head on a doorframe, and in a fit of rage screamed that she "wished she wouldn't have to duck so damn low!" and in a blinding flash of light found herself suddenly standing at only 3 feet tall.
Languages[edit | edit source]
Common, Gnomish, Primordial.
Powers and Abilities[edit | edit source]
Heli's primary approach to combat is simple: Ride Brokkr, and stab whatever needs killing in the face.
As for what other abilities she has, her current known fusions are: Returning Weapon, Enhanced defense, Homunculus Servant, and Replicate: Bag of Holding. Her known cantrips are Mending, and Green-Flame Blade, and she can naturally cast Produce Flame and Burning Hands due to her race.
As for spells, she regularly keeps gadgets on hand that replicate the abilities of: Detect magic, Cure light wounds and heroism, but has assorted gadgets to replicate other spells.
Attacks and Weapons [edit | edit source]
Her favorite weapon is her custom crafted spear, the head and grip made of the same blackened steel as her prosthetic hand, with a crystal lattice up the length of the shaft to allow her to channel her powers through it.
The Tempest Brother's, Heli's adventures so far.[edit | edit source]
Foreword; I started this journal after returning to Galik. So some of my memories may be fuzzy.
Well... Where do I begin? As an attempt to make a name for myself on my own without my family's name overshadowing me I signed up for this company as a liaison for my guild. I had come with the intention of helping to build forward operating bases or something and was chomping at the bit to get started... But I didn't expect to get pulled into a mission within minutes of reaching camp. I managed to meet a couple interesting people before getting pulled out on a recon mission.
Mission One: Cabin in the woods.[edit | edit source]
My first mission wasn't very memorable... Brokkr and I showed up in camp and I was immediately grabbed and sent deep into the woods to investigate this ancient cabin... Place was at least a hundred years old from the look of the plank decomposition. Booby traps everywhere that were disabled by the automaton Lhamda just blundering through them... I did learn about a new god by the name of "Bajayzuz" on this mission.. was very interesting listening to the cleric preaching about him... There was also what i thought was a human wizard named Professor Mann, and his feline familiar Chester... But by the end of the mission I was pretty sure the roles were reversed, and the human wasn't actually human... He moved and fell like a marionette... Anyway, there had been some kind of necromantic ritual performed in this place. We had to fight a handful of ghosts on the top floor, and then a couple more and a banshee in the basement... I'd been possessed by the damn thing and by the gods that is a horrible experience that I never want to go through again... Other than encountering the spirits there's not much of note that comes to mind about this mission.
Mission Two: The Hydrail[edit | edit source]
My second outing was much more interesting than the first. The powers that be were looking for a crew to investigate a point where the leylines seemed to be closer to the surface... Turns out the damn things were actually breaching the ground. Multiple new friends were made this mission. Sir Yewvane of the Autumnal court... He was a little full of himself at times but from my experience he was a good man. Wiggler, a truly interesting individual - a sentient worm controlling a automaton... And he's somehow a druid even though is body is a robot - and from what I've seen so far an honestly good person. 22, an actual full robot that's also coincidentally a druid... And then Thordon, a druid barbarian I've had a couple missions with so far and he's been a powerful combatant, and again another good person... I haven't actually encountered any horrible members except for the lecherous accountant... But these men I've had the pleasure of going on multiple missions with, and Thordon, Wiggler, and Yewvane have all saved my life by this point and I'd kill for any one of them... Anyway. The mission was to investigate leylines. There was a settlement of humanoid snail folk who lived around a series of leylines that were actually emerging from the ground. There were two other groups there to join in a competition for the rights to study the leylines. The first group was a pack of really weird Kobolds. The second was named a pumpkin headed man named Dynia... When we encountered him there he seemed like a good enough guy... Made a delicious pumpkin pie for me. We talked about Nestle and Cauldomo as a whole... He had told me he was one of the Gourdguard, so of course I trusted him... Later learned he was one of the Gourheart Desciples... It was his fault Xevriss returned. But that was well down the line.
Our three groups were subjected to a series of trials. The first we had to race past a hedge maze that was trying to consume us... The trial was to prove our worth or something I don't quite remember what the reasoning behind it was... We unfortunately fought the hedges and were getting consumed until I realized that Dynia was just walking through... Turns out the hedges were sentient and only trying to stop us because we were being aggressive... I apologized for setting a large chunk on fire... It let us through and we apparently succeeded the first challenge.
The second challenge we approached a bridge with a guardian who asked us three questions... Which were oddly simple. He asked me my name, my quest, and my favorite color (Red-orange). Not sure what he asked the others but I think Thordon got his question wrong because he got launched and had to climb back up... But after a while we finally made it across and onto the third mission...
The third challenge was fairly unpleasant... turns out that one of us had been possessed by a fey spirit who only knew what had been discussed during the mission so we were able to ask a single question of each other to try to sus out who was possessed... Which gotta say was absolute hell when we all barely knew each other... Anyway, turns out Yewvane was the possessed one and we got lucky with the first guess.
Challenge four was thankfully much more straight forward... We just had to take a medallion from the GIANT MULTIHEADED SNAIL GUARDIAN.. Yea turns out there was a giant snail feeding on the leyline and it caused it to mutate and grow multiple heads... And any time we cut one off it would grow multiple more... So after fighting it and getting the medallion the group of Kobolds that had failed challenge one appeared... turns out they were followers of Old Alkiminic who had just woken... They were all these freakish Mimic creatures... Any time we touched them we would stick... Their leader jumped on the hydrail's main head and fused with it... And we had to fight the hydrail AGAIN... and thankfully won. And in doing so we earned the exclusive rights for the Tempest Brothers to be able to study the leylines there... But we also learned that Old Alkiminic had returned... Which in turn led to...
Mission Three: The Slaying of Old Alkiminic.[edit | edit source]
This one was... rough... Everything happened so fast that my memory is a little fuzzy... Didn't help that I was nearly consumed during the mission... It all started with an aerial drop from one of the airships right into the mountain lair of Old Alkiminic. All sorts of mimic horrors around... We flew down into the living mountain, nearly crashing into the teeth and only missing because I had managed to plot us a course... which was probably the only contribution i made to this mission, other than being a distraction during the battle... But we all made it in alive. It was myself, Yewvane, a wood elf archer named Dragonette who I've unfortunately only interacted with a couple times, Reedy, a ranger who I wish i had gotten to know her better.. She's no longer with us, having been lost on a mission not long after... A dragonborn artificer whose name escapes me... This had been my first mission with them as well and I havent seen them since... and another Automaton, this one named Radion - another warrior I've come to respect... Along with Yewvane he's one of the only reasons i'm alive to write this journal.
The fight was one giant blur... We entered his den and he was nowhere to be found... Until he dropped to the ground behind us, trapping us in... Any contact with his flesh was like touching glue, trying to suck us in... Dragging us along with him as he moved... Brokkr and I... we barely stayed alive. I was so far in over my head it was ridiculous... Rather than an actual breath attack, the entity wearing Old Alkiminic's flesh vomited up this mass of tentacles that grabbed us... and pulled us in... leaving us stuck to his body... For the majority of the fight i was trapped, barely able to stab at him... Or I was in a daze smashed against a stalactite... or stalagmite... I always get those two mixed up... But in the end, he was slain. And I obtained my first dragonmark.
The First Assault on Camp.[edit | edit source]
I still don't quite have all the details of the first assault on the camp... But there was a magical plague that had overcome the camp... a fog bank that blew in that we couldn't do anything about... The plague was immune to all healing magic... I later learned that it was tied to a demon the other members of the crew had encountered on other missions... some fungal growth was surrounding the camp and smothering it in some kind of demon magic... Multiple members of the support staff... a couple adventurers, and the wife of one of the company leaders were taken... I had been trying to shore up our defenses so i hadn't gone on the rescue missions that followed... But turned out that a kobold village we had been in contact with had also been attacked... and we had saved our own people rather than reinforce them... A decision we'd come to pay for...
Mission Four: The Gnoll Prison Camp.[edit | edit source]
I'd been part of the party put together to check on Thinwhistle, the kobold village, after we'd recovered from the attack on the camp... At some point during our travel there we were ambushed and knocked out... I don't have any memories between leaving camp, and waking up in a prison cell... Unarmed, with a collar around my neck... And locked in the cell with me were the rest of the party sent: A tiefling named Marion, who coincidentally was loitering around camp when i first arrived and she made me feel very welcome, Thordon, and Black Jack, a Rabbitfolk artificer with his little mechanical Kobold companion who was similar to my Brokkr... We all were in nothing but rags and the damn metal collars. Before long a Gnoll came along and opened our cell door, corraling us into a large room with I dont even know how many other people... Most of them hunters or adventurers who were in the wrong place at the wrong time... While we were getting our bearings we were approached by a rival group of adventurers that apparently other members of the expeditionary group had encountered in the past... I don't really know much about them so I dont have much to say... But they worked with us to escape.... It was an altogether unpleasant experience. The collars were magical and connected to gauntlets the gnolls wore and when activated they electrocuted us to incapacitate us and make it easier for them to beat us... After a decent amount of planning we split up to work on escaping... being the smallest and lightest, I was thrown up onto the balcony of the warden's office as Thordon created a distraction... The prison warden, Ripjaw, was a Gnoll that had modified himself with large amounts of magitek... I've learned through the camp that he's trying to track down an ancient Kobold city full of ancient Artificer technology... And apparently this prison camp was to interrogate as many people as they could to get what information they could to try to track it down... Another group snuck past the guards to get to the armory, where it turned out they were keeping Brokkr as well as Black Jack's defender, along with all of our gear... And then one of the other members were taken into the interrogation room and disabled the defenses on the place.
While on the balcony, Ripjaw was joined by a couple other people - The Green knight, and a Myconid, as well as a man i later learned was Reedy's father... I don't remember exactly what was discussed, but they had who they were looking for and were about to kill all the prisoners... After they left the office I broke in, got ahold of the key for the collars, and came face to face with a red cloaked entity with a ram's skull for a head, surrounded by 6 statues... He just silently watched me as I stole a set of tools and the key from Ripjaw's office and then climbed back out... Just in time for the gates containing the dinosaurs to open. Massive green dinosaurs with thick tails stomping out of their cages to just tear into the prisoners... There were so many gnolls... paired with the dinosaurs... it was a bloodbath... And through it all, we could see a kobold being led out of one of the side passages - the others informed me that it was Thrax, the leader of Thinwhistle.. And as we fought our way towards the elevator, the Myconid did.. something... to him, grabbing him and covering him in the spores... Before just letting him go to run onto the elevator with us, another Kobold named Hunk, and then a human prisoner whose name I never even got to learn...
Upon surfacing, we were greeted by the burned remains of Thinwhistle. Kobold Korpses everywhere... most of the structures burned to the ground... And between us and the village, was the ram-skull man... Who began screaming at us, ranting about how mortals were a mistake... How we do nothing but destroy everything we touch. How the expeditionary company was destroying the balance... And then, the human who had made it out with us... Was unmade... I don't have the words to describe what happened to him, but "unmade" is the best way I can put it... And then the ram faced man just... disappeared... and the other party of adventurers called their airship in to give us a lift out... And while we were in the air, I was reminded of the Myconid... And what it did to Thrax... And when I went to speak to him he was acting oddly... And... I panicked... We'd seen so much death from the mushrooms, zombies coming to live covered in them... People losing control of themselves... and I was terrified that he would turn on us... so I... Immolated him... And he fell from the airship and into the forest below... Gods... If only I knew then what I know now... I could have done things differently... resisted my emotions... But... It's too late to undo what I'd done, and what's come from it.
Mission Five: Grocery Shopping.[edit | edit source]
Well, This mission wasn't nearly as eventful or traumatic as the last.. After going through enough hell, I signed up for a simple mission to go gather supplies for Nettle, the camp's cook who makes soups with magical properties. There was a tree growing above a point where the leylines were close to the surface and they were effecting it and giving it magical properties. When we got there, there was a group of gnolls trying to destroy the tree, and we got attacked by this giant flying dinosaur with a firey aura that I've named the Pyroqoatalus which was wearing a collar similar to the ones from the prison, which i had been trying to reverse engineer the gauntlets for... Unfortunately, I wasn't fast enough, and just as I successfully disabled the collar... there was already an arrow in flight that dealt the final blow... Poor thing... But my pity for it didn't stop us from harvesting it for meat and it's hide...
Mission Six: Grung Guardians.[edit | edit source]
So, in the background of everything I've been informed of, there's an entity known as the Warden who apparently helps protect the wilds. Well this mission, they had called for reinforcements. Turns out a village of Grung had been hit by a plague of some sort and the warden was trying to find a cure for the parents while taking care of the children from the village. While the kids were absolutely insane, they were so inquisitive, minds like sponges. After the mission and everything I taught them how to wittle, and make basic contraptions... But prior to that we had to go find these really rare flowers for the warden... I was accompanied on this mission by a really interesting monk named Balder, who called himself The Boulder. A bard named Danke Shan, Dr RIchard Weedus a barbarian, and Radion... Not much of note during this mission, other than that Richard fighting and killing a Yuan Ti while we were looking for the flowers.
Mission Seven: The Dragon Artifact.[edit | edit source]
Unfortunately.... I dont remember much about this mission, I just remember there were Ghouls and gnolls,.. We had been hired by a dragonborn who was told by a previous member named Sabbatical to come to the company for help if he needs it... There were some puzzled linked to dragons... One door being unlocked by removing a dragon's "heart" from a statue... another needing an actual piece of a dragon... And the murals in the place led us to believe that the statue we were taking might contain the soul of a black dragon... Really hope this doesn't bite us in the ass some day...
Mission Eight: Those Bastards Better Let Me Into Nestle![edit | edit source]
This is the story of the ages! Probably my greatest achievement for now and the future that follows. The mission where I aided in slaying Xevriss! Through the whole seasons Dynia had been doing gods knows what... A couple other members had been handling him, I'd never been around or able to assist with those missions so i don't know the details... I just know he was stealing everybody's food to feed the Devourer. I'm sure everybody back home heard about The Gourd Guard being mobilized, and we were being called in as reinforcements. It was myself, Radion, Thordon, Black Jack, my first actual mission with an Aaracokra bard named Finny, we'd met around the camp and had discussed defensive plans, a monk named Juno I havent had many interactions with, and a Drow warrior named Lux I haven't had many positive interactions with... It started out with us arriving at the mustering point, I wandered off to investigate the artillery and lost track of what the others were up to... But I came back for the beginning of the assault, we were going to be part of the second wave... one of the others discovered a traitor among our ranks. We rushed to catch up to the first wave, and arrived just in time to witness Xevriss appear and consume the pompous loudmouth who thought himself a hero in the middle of his ridiculous speech... And that's when all hell broke loose.
Scarecrow giants appeared, Multiple chromatic dragons cresting the mountains, one of which bein Jatil Jivelg, and countless cultists appeared... Most of what followed was a blur as we charged ahead, trying to take out the scarecrows as they were the biggest threat we could actually do anything about... As we finished off the scarecrow, the Blue dragon flew by, blasting the ground around us and sending us tumbling into the abyss... Where we found Xevriss's lair, with more food than I'd probably seen my entire life... And before long, the grotesquely obese beast lumbered into his lair to try to escape, and after a hard battle, we finally defeated him and claimed his horde for the Tempest Brothers... So at next year's Hallow's Eve celebrations those bastards better send me a personal invite to the Gourd Guard's reenactment or else I'm going to burn Nestle to the ground.
Mission Nine: I Was Joking, I Swear I'm not Psychic.[edit | edit source]
One of the company's air skiffs had come missing and we were being sent after it... We were being sent by Paul, one of the powers that be, to check on the crew that had been investigating some ruins... He specifically told us he wasn't going to come with us, and then when we got to the airship he came running, yelling for us to wait for him because he had "changed his mind last minute" and I jokingly made a comment about him being a doppelganger... Which... Turns out he was. We found the skiff and they claimed a creature had destroyed the comms unit and controls... Suspecting foul play we went to check some ruins nearby. While exploring the ruins we were attacked by undead that we cleared out with minimal issue while Paul waited outside. When we went back to check on him he was dead with a knife in the back of his head... And of course after putting the thought of him being a doppelganger in everybody's head we did an impromptu autopsy on him... Which paid off because he was just... Bizarre. His innards were freakishly warped... a series of boneless hands inside it with some form of magic item where his heart should have been... We went back to camp and started interrogating some other members, and while checking for traces of magic i detected the same magic as was coming from the fake paul's chest... And as we called him out Paul appeared behind us, and turned out to be some entity that again the crew had a history with, who had the philosopher's stone... We killed him, and stole the stone to bring back to camp.
Mission Ten: Regrets of Rash Decisions.[edit | edit source]
So, the past finally caught up to me. Hunk, the Kobold that we got out of the prison came and demanded assistance finding Thrax's body... The memory of that day had haunted my dreams regularly... The look in his eyes as the flames enveloped him... The flaming body disappearing into the canopy miles below... So when Hunk demanded assistance in finding him, I was the first to volunteer. followed by 22, Danke Schon, Dr Richard Weedus, and a group of newcomers ; Lupine Lucas, Ren Atherton, and Mariar. From the moment we left the camp, Hunk was hostile to us especially towards me... Which I don't blame him for in the slightest. His plan was to use us as a distraction while his squad of raptor riding Kobolds scoured the forest for Thrax's body... Apparently, Thrax was the only person who knew where to find the ancient Kobold city. The Gnolls had since joined forces with a demon who could resurrect the dead with mushrooms and they were trying to find Thrax's body... So I did my best to triangulate where his body would have fallen to give them the advantage as they sent us to our deaths.
The battlefield was full of undead, and a pair of massive mechanical monstrosities, as well as a trio of cultists... Richard and I charged the first construct as Mariar threw up a wall of fog to keep the second vehicle from firing at us as we tried to disassemble the first and the others handled the undead... For anybody who reads this that encounters the machines in the future: Attack from behind. The armor is thickest at the front, but the back is primarily disgusted corrupted flesh... It's still durable, but significantly easier to injure... The battle was insane, the machine soaking up everything we could throw at it... Zombies charging into try to pulls us down for the machine to consume... And then through the mist came a redheaded elf... Who immediately after trying to stab me in the back as I was distracted by the machine she said something along the lines of "Jack isn't going to be happy you're interfering with his plans" - turns out Jack was one of hte guys we escaped the prison with... But he's now working with the demon queen? Who the hell knows... After a while, the redhead received a message that the gnolls had found the body but the Kobolds were there... So she sent the cultists to assist them... We managed to destroy the first vehicle, and at this point we were trying to figure out how to disengage to help the Kobolds... Only to overhear from Red that the Gnolls had the body... And then immediately teleport away... the zombies all falling dead, and the remaining tank burrowing away... When we met up with Hunk again, there was only one of his Kobold Cavalry remaining... And was at least a little more civil towards us... But we had still failed...
The Second Assault On Camp.[edit | edit source]
I had just finished constructing a gem and crystal lattice to help focus and transfer magical effects between items at the forge and was preparing to call it a night when the screams started... Undead running in from the darkness. Pouring past the walls I had so painstakingly worked on... The orders boomed through the camp, ordering a full retreat. To gather all the supplies we can and get them on the boat. I'd rushed to the forge to try to protect it as the Warden's defenses kicked in... Beasts appearing from nowhere to assault the camp... Somehow, I'd gotten control of an adolescent dinosaur, which I mounted and charged into the fray, trying to kill whatever I could to cover the Quartermaster and his crew... Unfortunately, it was only Radion and I at the forge at the start, and the dead were starting to overwhelm us till Yewvane came to assist and turned them... We caught snippets of what was going on at other parts of the camp, Ripjaw trying to take the green knight's helmet from the main fire... Undead trying to destroy the Warden's staff... But we were so busy trying to just stay alive that I couldn't pick up more than those snippets as the constructs we'd encountered while assisting Hunk entered the fray, Shooting my dinosaur with it's necrotic magic cannon as I leapt away to go assist the penguins in disassembling the forge... More and more undead constantly charging at the forge. More of the cursed constructs... And then the ground started to shake at the approach of a massive, grotesque monstrousity. Easily over twenty feet tall the morbidly obese daemon lumbered towards us, so grotesquely obese that it's flesh was tearing as the fat was trying to escape... Acidic bile just pouring out of it's mouth and off of it's limbs as I frantically tried to disassemble the damn forge. My fingers are still bruised and hands sliced up from trying to tear it apart... I didn't assist with much of the combat other than just barking orders to try to keep control. Dinosaurs rushing the constructs and the demon. a displacer beast and wild boar charging in to fight as Yewvane fought the zombies themselves to protect me.. At one point shoving me out of the way as a flying version of the construct equipped with a massive rotating blade charged me from behind... It looked like there was no hope. At one point he group at the main campfire abandoned it, taking what supplies they could, Finny bringing the Green Knight's helmet to Yewvane for some reason I wasn't quite privvy to.. And with it a pack of over a dozen Gnolls, arrows raining from the sky as the flying construct harpooned him out of the air... After the deaths of two dinosaurs, the power was beginning to wane and the enemies were overwhelming us... And then the final order came to board the ship, camp was lost... And as we could hear the undead horde charging our way I managed to pop the final bolt off of the forge, the penguins picking it up and running to the ship as I barely managed to get Brokkr functional enough to make it back to the ship... And then we set sail back to Galik...
And now here we are. I write this while sitting at a table in the Tempest Brother's HQ, unsure what to do next... Everything since the attack just feels like a dream, like I'm just floating along on a cloud... Not knowing where the world's going to take me next...
Galik Adventures![edit | edit source]
Nightmares Of Past Mistakes[edit | edit source]
(Within this entry, there are smudges in the ink, as if droplets had fallen on the ink before it dried.)
I... Don't really know how to start about this one... Was there even an outing? I... Don't remember. I've been piecing things together since but there's a blank space where this night is concerned. I'd been planning on an outing to the circus with a couple other members... Thordon, 22, Ren Atherton who had helped when we were working for Hunk... and a newbie whose name actually escapes me right now. We'd been on our way to the circus and that's about all I remember. We'd eaten... Something... And then at some point we all passed out...
It's what happened after we passed out that is the issue... The nightmare that followed still haunts me. Every couple nights I'll wake up with a singed bedframe as it comes back. I found myself in Thinwhistle, as if it hadn't been destroyed... And I was bound and nearly immobilized on the ground with Thrax looming over me. There was no mistaking it was him, even with half of his face burnt off, bone visible through his charred flesh... The hatred he held in his eyes... I know I deserved... He cursed my name, damning me for killing him... For breaking Hunk's oath... For being the reason Mother gets everything she needs... There was so much more to his rantings that just... I can't bring myself to write but no matter how much I tried to defend myself I knew he was right... The fight was sucked out of me as I felt the ground lowering beneath me. His snarling face as the water started rushing in... There was no mistaking the water, it was straight from the elemental plane of water. It was as if it seeped into my very being, sucking every bit of warmth from my body as the pit kept getting deeper and deeper. I tried to fight the bonds but barely managed to get my hands free and try to get my head above water. But the air only lasted for a few more seconds before I was consumed by the water again... And then the creature emerged. I tried to muster what anger i had left to fight back, but i was no match for the demonic looking snake... And what little light was making it through the water was snuffed out as it consumed me...
And then we all woke up. We were outside of the city limits, just laying in the dirt... None of us knew what had happened. The only proof that anything HAD happened was the newbie had a book about the language of ducks, and we all remembered snippets of going somewhere and eating something... But since then I'd managed to piece together some bits... And I'm pretty sure we had made it to the circus that day... And there's some kind of evil there that wiped our memory... Something that feasts on nightmares...
The Embers of Love Begin to Smoke.[edit | edit source]
This next outing was perhaps one of the best yet... And I can only hope that one day this random mission will lead to me bringing home a wonderful woman to meet everybody, I'm sure she'd love the forges.
I'd been loitering around the headquarters with no real aim for the day when the head mechanic showed up, tasking a handful of us to go aid her friend Snowdrop at the Galik Glass Emporium. It'd been myself, Blackjack and 22, as well as a wizard I'd only seen in passing once or twice back at camp named... Twilsby, all I know about him is he would make and sell scrolls. Apparently he decided to do some field work this day. And then there were two newbies i hadnt encountered before.
So, we traveled to the glass Emporium and met up with Snowdrop, a very fluffy white Tabaxi. She was sweet but a bit scatterbrained. She needed us to help recover her assistant Tanis who maintained her furnaces. Somebody had dug a tunnel into the basement chambers and kidnapped her. While investigating we'd found some evidence pointing towards a Galik crime family I won't name in case it could cause issues... But they had captured her and retreated through the tunnel to the docks, leaving a few traps along the way which we had managed to get past.
Upon reaching the docks, I came to the realization that... Apparently when I'm practically engulfed in flames I'm fairly terrifying. I didn't want to risk having to injure dock hands who had nothing to do with the kidnapping so I'd managed to scare off a few of the thugs before we were finally noticed and attacked.
I'd mentioned previously about "The Jack Of Hearts" And how we'd fought one of his associates... Well, turns out ANOTHER one of his associates was working with the crime family, and had kidnapped Tanis. This one was an undead pyromancer. There was a significant scuffle with myself, blackjack and 22 leading the charge, while Twilsby snuck around to Tanis's cage to remove her bonds. During the distraction, we'd incapacitated numerous thugs and dockhands, and I had been on an adjacent dock dealing with a fairly skilled swordswoman when the pyromancer summoned a water elemental.
It was around this time that Twilsby managed to unlock Tanis's bonds. Picture the scene: A pair of adjacent docks. I engaged in mighty combat with a fairly skilled swordswoman, trading blows back and forth, flames dancing around my blade. The others engaged with the pyromancer and the water elemental on the opposite dock. And then the beautiful black and crimson haired woman in the cage at the center stands up to her full height, takes a deep breath, and releases a massive gout of fire breath. Flame so hot that the elemental boiled where the flames lapped at it's surface. The dancing orange light illuminating her face so it was all I could see. It was at this moment that I knew I had found the love of my life!
Unfortunately, due to being trapped in the cage, she wasn't able to offer much assistance after that gout of flame, but it'd been enough to make the pyromancer lose control of the elemental. We finished them off, found the keys to the cage, and returned Tanis to the Glass Emporium, and I've been visiting on a fairly regular basis to add "Glass Blowing" to my repertoire. While I havent quite gotten it mastered yet, I'm starting to get the hang of it... And while I'm practicing my techniques I have the honor of Tanis's company... And I'm pretty sure I'm starting to win her over. She was actually laughing at my jokes the other day and I'm almost positive it was earnest laughter. I'll be sure you keep you all updated on this front, and maybe I'll send home a portrait of us together if I can talk her into it.
Marvels of Engineering! And the shenanigans that occur on them.[edit | edit source]
About a week after rescuing Tanis we were approached by a member of Galik nobility who informed us that a high ranking member of the fungal cult that had been behind so many of the company's woes would be vulnerable while traveling on the Galik City Railway. She couldn't tell us anything about the individual other than that... And it was a hell of a time trying to track the bastard down. On this mission it was myself, 22 again - It's quite intriguing how many missions we end up on together - Marion, Ren Atherton, and an individual named Juno that I hadn't had the privilege of working with before.
I had simply been fascinated by the train itself. If I ever become rich and famous enough I fully intend to get one of my own, maybe build a track between Gravel peak and Nestle... The following entry has been scribbled out due to not being pertinent. Ok. So,,, ignore all that wasted ink. Trains are fascinating, none of you were as interested in magitek as I was. So I won't bore you with details. All you need to know is the train was infested with fungus, there was a runaway bride, a bounty hunter, a gardener, a college student, a gambler gnome, a minotaur, and a bum Kobold.
Anyway, between Marion and 22 skimming the thoughts off the other passengers we'd slimmed it down to the previously mentioned individuals.. But in the end we figured out it was the gambler gnome... He'd cursed most of the others to be under his control... and he made us play Galik Hold'em for their lives...
Thankfully, the bastard didn't believe in folding a bad hand, and just enjoyed bluffing his way through everything... So in the end we won, he killed himself, and we had gotten a decent amount of information from him that we reported to the higher ups.