CROSSINGS

The Rise of a New World

many sessions later

After a harrowing battle, the mindflayer fails in eating any of our heroes and lays dead at their feet. Our heroes, unable to find the source of the rift decide to continue to follow where they remember the spectral blue chain leading them. They end up wandering out of the tree grove and run into two Tyrgarian soldiers. The soldiers, recognizing Sir Raneth offer to lead them to the fort they were stationed at. The fort welcomes the group and offers them shelter for the night.

In the middle night, our heroes were awoken to sounds of chaos in the fort. Curious, they exit their bunks and find the fort in an emergency state. It is explained that some black ooze army is marching and wreaking havoc across the countryside. Our heroes climb the walls of Fort Bromark and see a large scale battle occurring off in the near distance. Wanting to help, they gear up, and after talking with the officers in charge discover that a seemingly endless supply of black ooze creatures continue to besiege the countryside. Wanting to find the source, our heroes borrow horses and set off in the direction they believed the monsters were coming from.

They find themselves at a wooded area, not too far from where they had fought the mindflayer and lead a charge through a wave of ooze monsters, fighting their way through but not without taking a few hits on the way. As they continue further, they encounter a trio of people. After a short conversation, they surmise that the trio was sent to stall them and they decide to push on through.

There they find an open rift and venture through it. Unfortunately, the otherside cages them in a magical runic circle. A woman on the otherside stands as the guardian and, although not hostile, doesn’t seem to be able to help. After talking to her for some time, they conclude that, while she means no ill intent towards them, something or someone holds her captive and, should our heroes continue any further, she would be forced to attempt to kill them. Still, despite what keeps her from telling them everything she’d like to, she is able to communicate to our heroes, the way out.

Our heroes end up leaving and returning to their native plane. However, when they return, they discover that several hours have passed as now dawn is on the horizon and in the distance, they see a large ancient dragon rapidly approaching.

Sir Raneth recongizes the dragon as the Emperor Yvas. The great dragon leader that protects Wesdrachen. Unfortunately, with the approach of Yvas, so too comes a cracking in the sky. A huge tear that reveals, on the otherside, some place else. There, hoards and hoards of too-far-away-to-be identified things enter Kres as well as two black dragons who make a beeline for Yvas.

The group decide to return to Fort Brommack and find the Fort half demolished. Above them, Yvas fights fiercely with the two slightly smaller but still huge black dragons. Despite this, the Tyrgarian soldiers seem to be making progress pushing back the black ooze creatures.

Our heroes decide to help Yvas and enter the remains of the fort in hopes of readying siege weapons. Unfortunately, Yvvas is wrestled to the ground by the two dragons inside the fort. Our heroes scramble up the parapets and ready the siege weapons.
Unfortunately, the firing of the siege weapons draws the attention of the black dragons which brings an onslaught of acid down onto them, robbing Prince Rayis of his life.

Thankfully, Yvas manages to help save the rest of our heroes by drawing the two dragons away and eventually slaying them as the morning sun rises into the afternoon and the giant tear in the sky repairs itself, almost as if a divine hand had a role in it all.

Battered and defeated, the Riftbusters sought shelter. Raneth, desperate to find out about her home and family, suggests they return to the capital city of Tyrgaria and so our heroes went, carrying the body of Rayis with them.

When they arrive, they find that Tyrgaria is only in marginally better shape than the fort. The city itself does not seem to have any creatures wreaking havoc when they arrive, however, destroyed homes, buildings, and townsmen desperately upending the broken stones in search for survivors amongst the smell of ash and smoke tell them that Tyrgaria did not have an easy night.

They rush to the castle that Raneth grew up in and find that it has been turned into a makeshift hospital/refugee center. There, they find Raneth’s sister Frigelda, leading the relief effort and discover that the members of House Thunder were safe, managing to flee elsewhere but Frigelda stayed, feeling that her leadership was needed in these trying times.

Raneth offers the family crypts as a safe place for Rayis’ body and the group enlists the help of a dragonborn druid named Gendel who had been helping with the relief effort to care for the body. Gendel finds, on Rayis’ body, a letter detailing his last wishes to return his body to his home. Feeling obligated, the group decides to pursue this quest but not before Raneth explains that she feels the need to stay in Tyrgaria now that it’s in peril, however, she has enlisted the help of Boscoe’s grandson Doxy to replace her, explaining that Doxy is making the trek over as they speak.

In the meantime, Frigelda informs the Riftbusters plus Gendel that new intelligence has found what they believe to be the source of the black ooze monsters and asks that they lend their aid. Along with a few scouts, the group sets off.

There they meet a mage being who seems to have some control of the ooze monsters and after ambushing him, do manage to defeat him. Unfortunately he leaves no body behind, just the equipment that is on his person.

Thankfully, with his death, so goes the ooze creatures and the group returns back to House Thunder to help rebuild.

They spend a few days there helping and prepping to return Rayis’ body as they await Doxy’s arrival. There they learn that Tyrgaria was not the only place where tragedy struck. It seems, on the night of the ooze battle, several simultaneous attacks took place in different parts of Cesmaria, including a woman who has taken over Belebrought who calls herself the Blood Queen, a man on the northern side of Tyrgaria named Morg who wreaks havoc on a dragon, an undead army marching around North of them and many more tragedies that leaves at least one city as little more than a crater in the ground.

Still, despite this information, the group, when Doxy arrives, decides to venture northward where Gendel believes there to be a portal to the water plane they could access. However, in order to reach their destination, they must venture through the heart of the Cesmarian region of Wesdrachen where the undead army marches and where Morg apparently patrols. Upon their first day, they are accosted by three young red dragons which they manage to defeat. Seeking shelter, Gendel points them to a secret druid grove, known as the Grove of Life. Upon arrival, they find people already there, having also sought refuge. Most of them are random travelers picked up by a trio of druids protecting them and there they spend the night.

The druids warn the party against the journey as it is dangerous and that they are unlikely to succeed without cost. The party reluctantly decide to leave Rayis’ body in the grove-at least until they can dispatch some of the more immediate threats on their trek to the northern coast.

They spend the night there and in the morning, find themselves face to face with an old friend – Halen, who had traveled in hopes of finding his friends safe. Together they discuss their next course of action.

Eventually, the group decide to scout out the immediate threats-influenced by two young refugee boys asking for their help in finding their parents, hoping to find someone to give them more information on Morg. They run into a goblin and an orc arguing over bodies in a cart. The group manage to question them and decide to sneak into the camp.

Their plan involves having Halen and Bartok bring in Doxy as a sacrifice to Morg’s dragon whilst Racket sneaks around the camp.

They succeed in deceiving the camp as well as Morg himself, who acts quite friendly to Halen and Bartok. Unfortunately for Doxy, as he is a rather unusual looking person, he is singled out as prime material for the dragon.

The group first watches in horror as the dragonlings are released into a small corral where they tear into prisoners before Doxy is marched forward to be sacrificed to the large black dragon that Morg rides.

Morg jumps on his dragon’s back as Doxy is marched forward. Halen decides to turn invisible and follow Doxy close behind in order to hand Doxy his items as he had been stripped upon his arrival at the encampment. Racket, with the bag of devouring in his hand, rushes the corral in an attempt to remove the dragon from the picture.

Unfortunately, this fails and the dragon, begins to fly upward but not before Bartok manages to climb on.

On the dragon’s back, Bartok engages in a short but fierce battle with Morg while his friends look up from down below – managing to blend in with the crowd by tricking the crowd into chanting support for Morg.

Unfortunately, Morg gets the upper hand and right as he is about to slay Bartok, an offer is made which Bartok refuses. Bartok then, with the last of his will and energy, decides to throw himself off the dragon where he falls to the ground.

His friends race towards Bartok’s body and find their friend lifeless.

Distressed and emotional, they end up arguing, and Racket ends up leaving the group to seek out Raneth.

Halen and Doxy end up carrying Bartok’s body back to the grove where they ask the druids if there is anything they could possibly do. The druids inform them that there is a ritual they can attempt but that it is difficult, expensive, and that it would be most successful if those closest to Bartok partake.

They spend the next day gathering supplies for the ritual upon which Raneth arrives with Racket.

More discussions are had before the ritual is attempted and to their relief, it succeeds but not without some changes. Bartok’s body is wrapped in vines and emerges as a full blooded orc.

Now our heroes must decide what is next in their adventure.

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