Monthly Archives: September 2017

5th Ed. Spelljammer – The Wand of Orcus, session 27

From the sky, it didn’t take long for the crew of Sea of Stars to locate the main battle. A group of fire giants worked to break the shackles binding the world serpent while frost giants attempted to prevent them from doing so.

 

The crew discussed options as they descended toward Eorôe. Their first thought was to help with fire support from their catapults. Straxius directed Sumner to barrel through a gap in the friendly lines, ramming the ship into several fire giants, sending them off the edge of the world. The world serpent managed to set Sea of Stars’s port side ablaze with its fiery breath. As they came around, the crew fought the fire with their decanter of endless water. Straxius reconsidered using the ship and they landed at the edge of the battlefield.

 

Wading into the fray, they worked their way through the salamander minions to reach the giants trying to break the shackles. While they weren’t entirely successful staying out of range of the world serpent’s breath, they did defeat enough giants to inspire the fire giant king to show himself.

 

He called the crew out, ordering them to cease their fighting and accusing the frost giants of being the true enemy. “It is THEY who upset the natural order of things. Too long have they dwelt in the light; it is time for the World Serpent to cleanse the land and renew the cycle of life. We have dwelt in darkness past our time and it is our turn now to dwell in light.”

 

The sole remaining frost giant had only one thing to say as she reaffirmed her willingness to fight to the death: “They seek to destroy all that we have built and nurtured. They seek to bring into darkness all that which dwells in light.”

 

Through a slip of the tongue, Rune challenged the fire giant king to single combat. The fire giant leader accepted, though made no promises his people would accept the outcome. Rune took to the sky and was nearly victorious, but was brought low by thrown boulders. Once the single combat was decided, Veya charged in and killed the fire giant king, rallying the frost giant reinforcements.

 

Though the force seeking to free the head of the world serpent from its shackles was defeated, there remained several other groups. Over the next several weeks, the crew of the Sea of Stars flew with their frost giant allies around the world, sending the fire giants back to the darkness and earning the Frost Giants and their vassals a century’s reprieve from the Change of Ages.

 

The crew feasted with the giants and recovered from their wounds before facing the final leg of their voyage, seeking out Sunless Sphere, no fewer than an additional two hundred days away. It was there, on the world of Varlden Dod orbiting the Black Star, that they could open the portal to the Positive Material Plane through which Garria, the reincarnation of Hrothgar the Penitent, would carry the Wand of Orcus to its ultimate destruction.

The whole story with Eorôe and Patria sphere: The outer lands of this disc world are populated by giants who stand vigilant against the threat from the other side. The interior is populated by two groups of avian-folk, White Ones and Black Ones (so named for the color of their feathers). The folk on the interior live and work together in peace, though technically, they are vassals of the giants (the frost and the fire, respectively). Every thousand years, the world serpent is awoken and the world flips. The frost giants, who have been in control of the light side for the last thousand years, bound the world serpent to prevent the Change of Ages, precipitating this conflict where the fire giants fight for their time in the light. As far as the White Ones and Black Ones are concerned, the Change of Ages is akin to a changing of the guard; it doesn’t overly affect their lives.

Eorôe’s Change of Ages is really a whole campaign… which was NOT the one the PCs were currently playing; they just came in at the end and acted as a wild card to change the outcome.

Now, onto the finale…

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5th Ed. Spelljammer – The Wand of Orcus, session 26

Boccob’s Barge

As the hammership approached, Straxius ordered his crew to bombard it with Sea of Stars’s catapults. While their aim was true, Boccob’s Barge continued to close and increased to ramming speed. With a crash, the two spelljammers collided. A mass of arms, legs, and torsos tumbled from Boccob’s Barge onto Sea of Star’s main deck. The Ghoul King contacted Straxius telepathically:  “Surrender the wand and I will call off my minions. You may live and return to your mundane life of hauling cargo. I will even transfer all this infernal beer in my hold.”

 

The mass rose up and began attacking the crew, even while the Ghoul King and his minions attacked from afar. Straxius and Rune concentrated on the Ghoul King and a familiar woman, Gwen Sallas, the woman they freed from slavers on the Rock of Bral, now a vampire in the service of the Ghoul King.

 

As the Corpse Mound disgorged zombies to further challenge the crew, Straxius countered spells thrown by the Ghoul King, until the undead leader dimensioned door to a safer haven within the ship.

 

Though they lost some crew, they were eventually triumphant over the undead crew of Boccob’s Barge. Unfortunately, the ship itself was a total loss, so they looted everything they could from Straxius’s old ship, then scuttled her. There was no sign of the Ghoul King, yet curiously, he left behind all of his accumulated treasure, including Hrothgar the Penitent’s skull; the last piece of the Wand of Orcus. Sumner discovered the skull by licking the Ghoul King’s collection until he tasted the distinct taint of the Demon Prince of Undead.

 

The crew quickly decided to keep the pieces of the wand separate in the hopes the minions of Orcus would have more difficultly tracking them as they determined how best to dispose of the vile artifact. Meanwhile, they resume their flight to Patria sphere.

Weeks later, Sea of Stars arrived at her destination to find a world on fire… .

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