World of Warcraft: Forgotten Curses

Into the Fellwood

There are some places you visit that you are always longing to go back. Fellwood is not one of those places. Our shaman, Thurg, summoned the spirits of the forest to help us determine our fate and got a diseased Night Elf in response to his summons. Even the spirits don’t like this place.

Anyways, we moved through the Fellwood and on toward Mount Hyjal. Satyrs attempted to distract us and keep us from making it through the forest, but they considerably overestimated themselves and soon were left as permanent residents of the Fellwood.

Fortunately, there was little else of note on our trek through that accursed forest. As we exited the forest, we found ourselves at the entrance of a large keep. Chizbolt and Allarin lead us into the keep, past the large number of statues in the courtyard and down into the mountain, drawing closer to a deep resonating scream.

As we draw closer to the source of the scream, a voice from the shadows informs us that while he has enjoyed our little pursuit, he has a task he must complete. We find ourselves in a large cavern and see the owner of the voice from the shadows, the satyr we have been following. He flies up to a tunnel near the roof and before we can concoct a plan to follow him, the ground literally drops from beneath our feet.

A large fellguard demon attempts to block our escape from the pit, but is soon reduced to being a large immobile object in our path. Passing what was left of it, we make our way to another cavern and find a bronze dragon, chained and tortured. Freeing him, he makes it clear we must stop the satyr from delivering the key to the caverns of time.

Quickly we find ourselves teleported elsewhere. The top of the keep, where we find the satyr attempting to escape. A brutal fight ensues, well, brutal for him anyways and we retrieve the key and return it to the bronze dragon.

And again, as if the last time we were teleported wasn’t bad enough, we find ourselves in another place. A troll village, Zel’jin. As the trolls circle us and prepare to attack, a group known to them runs in the front gate and says that a defense needs to be mounted, as there is a massive army behind them headed toward the town.

Members of this newly arrived group greet Chizbolt and Allarin as if they knew them from somewhere else and then set off to help the trolls prepare their defenses.

The Ecosystems of Kalimdor
From Savannah to Jungle

We pursued hard on the heels of the centaur who had captured our companion Syrnek whilst Allarin and Chizbolt pursued the teleporting satyr who had taken the amulet. Our quarry fled into the Barrens, truly an aptly named territory. We came upon the smoking shell of a burned out village. The bodies of orcs littered the ground, many of them bearing the wounds of centaur arrows and mauls. Of a curiosity was the surprising lack of dead given the size of the village. The explanation became apparent when we saw the trail leading away from the village had grown in size and was joined by a number of new tracks, most likely captives acquired at the village. At the village Wiggles and I stumbled upon another pair of traveling adventurers Robert Silversmith a paladin of the Silver Hand and Mushi Honeybrew a pandaren skilled in martial combat. The two spoke of Jana Proudmore and an assignment given them to root out an organization known as the League of the Free. This League, comprised of centaur, quillboar and other unsavory creatures, bore the same mark as the one we saw in Riverwatch. Joining forces seemed the only logical conclusion and soon we were pursuing the trail westward toward Mulgore.

I must confess I may have pushed my companions hard after coming to the realization that the centaur were headed toward my homeland. The very thought of those despicable creatures invading the lands that Cairne bestowed upon us fueled me, spurning me ever forward toward the mountains. The great paladin seemed in need of many breaks, no doubt the heavy metal plating of his armor cooking his body alive. It was late morning of the third day when we saw the dust cloud approaching on the horizon. Wiggle’s keen eyesight picked out a pack of centaur approaching rapidly from the west. We readied our weapons, eager for a fight. As they drew closer we saw that the centaur were harried by a patrol of Wolfriders. The orcs had slaughtered many of the centaur and the precious few that met our vanguard were soon put to rest with the help of Tearsong.

The joy of putting more of the accursed creatures to death was only magnified when I saw the commander of the Orc Clan, Drog Foebinder. Foebinder’s Bonespear clan were well known in the Third War, and my father had fought alongside Drog in many battles. Drog seemed equally as elated to once again see me, for it had been many years. We made camp with the Bonespear and our mission was only further confirmed. Thrall had sent the Bonespear out to track the League of the Free as well. The League was becoming an increasingly dark threat upon the lands of Kalimdor making more and more brazen attacks on cities and villages across the civilized land. Drog had put the centaur to the sword, but the company of quillboar had managed to escape with the prisoners making for the jungles of Feralas. We set out once again at first light with Drog’s blessings.

Feralas proved to be on the whole different than any of the other varied places we had yet seen. Massive towering trees and swelteringly oppressive heat like a damp blanket ever wrapped around us. The new terrain was unfamiliar to us all and it was not long before the trail we had followed became lost to us. Thankfully we stumbled upon a wooden palisade occupied by trolls. Wary of the potential for savage members of the species myself and Honeybrew approached the palisade and were invited inside. We met the leader Vol’Jin and learned that this outpost Zel’jin was friendly to our efforts. Vol also spoke of the arrival of the League of the Free in Feralas and the presence of massive, horned creatures that came from the deep jungle. Vol agreed to lead us to the deep jungle in the morning, however, as we slept we were once again visited by an apparition, a manifestation of the Insidious Matriarch speaking doom and promising destruction to all of us for our part in all of this. I fear no shadow, and I have determined that come the destruction of the world itself I will see the League of the Free put to an end.

From the Journal of Allarin Mageblade; part 2
Wiggles Crits for Minimum Damge

~Yet again, I found myself wondering what keeps me with these brazen adventures. True enough, Atruaghin is a cunning warrior, blessed with keen tactical insight and a sure fist. His leadership in combat is undisputed. However, his eyes like mine, seem pulled to horizon, towards goals still yet out of reach. Do we remain to hone ourselves as the group stumbles through the world?

Or Chizbolt. I can admit to myself that my earlier prejudice against the short green one was unfounded. The diminutive stature belies a towering intellect. His plans, both implemented and mumbled about hunched over paper filled with as many arcane symbols as I use. But his manic, almost rabid, desire for technology cleaves to close to my own struggle with craving of arcane energies. In staying with the party, do we aid each other in this, or amplify each other’s folly?

I digress. These are ill thoughts, bred by an idle and troubled mind. Sitting in this cavern, waiting out the night for a nearly omnipotent dragon to return and force, through applied or implied power, us to do his bidding weighs heavily on me. My allies sleep, all but Syrnek, the Forsaken slipping into his familiar roll of undead guardian while us mortals are relegated to helpless, inert forms. Next to me Wiggles, my stalwart ally rests comfortably, and across from me the saw like noises of goblin snoring rises and falls. What strange eddies of fate brings such groups together. It is nearly time for Malygos to return.

~Third day at sea, and first that I am able to sit and write. As I read over my past musings, I can chuckle at my previous ignorance. It was far worse than imagined. Malygos’ tale is one of ancient Highborne plots, the planes, and chthonic horrors returning, and he wants to send us to stop it from happening. Granted, even as I write this, the staff of frost he gave sits within arm’s reach, leaning up against the bulkhead. Frost forms where the heads of the staff touch the metal, and the wood weeps and steams lightly. A princely gift, but is it worth our lives.

The worse part about all of this, and I can see the ink staining the page the pen nib pressed deeply into the paper, as I struggle to write this calmly, is that we must travel to Tedrassil. The forsaken, perhaps I should find a better word in light of current company, home of the Night Elves. My ancestral hatred for these ‘kaldorei’ threatens to choke the breath from my chest. It will be all I can do not to unleash the full might of my arcane skill and take far more of them with me when I go.

But even if Malygos is prone to draconic flights of fancy, the world is still in peril. And while I have no desire to save even one degenerate, beast loving ‘night’ elf, I and my people are still a part of this world. And if the Matron indeed is freed…
I best head to the cockpit and check on Chizbolt, it feels like a storm is brewing.

~Crashed. By all the fates and gods above and below, I am so tired of these mechanical machines and their infernal habit of stranding me. Chizbolt would insist that no goblin wrought machine would do this, and both of our crashes are attributed to shoddy gnome craftmenship, but I need to start researching teleport spells. Ah there is the way to travel. As I write this entry, I sit in an inn. I use the term loosely, as I could very well be in the mayor’s house, town hall or just some other shitty hollowed out tree that the Kaldorei have graced us with as shelter. We met up with my barbaric, degenerate cousins on the shore after the storm, that was definitely not natural. When we meet the owner of this little accursed laugh that follows us, I will burn her to the ground.

This collection of old growth, that anywhere in the Eastern Kingdoms would be called a forest, is called the city of Astranaar. And while these simple minded creatures sought to ‘aid’ us, it quickly became clear that they were unable to aid even themselves. To the south east, one of them reports, they were attacked by centaurs. Which gets Atruaghin’s ire up. The Tauren hates the four legged plague with as much intensity as my disgust of these elves. But it is their symbol that bothers me most. They are, connected to events that have plagued us. So with little discussion we decide to head out, into the wild to save a people who are not worth it.

~The battle is over. Between frost and hammer and bow and giant mechanical beast, our enemies lay slain at our feet. But even as we tend to our wounds, matters force us to split. A satyr, who seemed to be in command, stole the amulet from Atruaghin and teleported away. I must learn that spell. On top of that centaurs captured Syrnek, who held the dagger. Something fell seeks these items, and we must recover them. Even now the group prepares to spilt, with time being of the essence some will seek out Syrnek and the rest will track the satyr.
If the fates brought us together, perhaps they can find a way to do so again.

Death Rides a Pale Steam Driven Goblin Shredder

While we rest and recuperate in Ironforge I decide to upgrade and Goblinize my new toy. After two weeks of tinkering I improve the armor and armaments of the Steamarmor I found in Gnomeragon. With me at the controls nothing can stop this ironclad death machine!

By the time I finish my work the rest are ready to continue our journey over these “artifacts”. We decide to take our “liberated” gnome sub to Northrend, specifically Dragonblight to talk to Malygos the Spell Weaver. Airslicer seems to think he can help us solve the riddle of these artifacts. The gnomes tell us that there is a cavern at the bottom of Iceflow Lake that should take us to the coast. After several hours of harrowing travel, and some expert piloting, we reach the sea. Traveling on the surface as much as we can we reach Northrend in about a week.

Damn it’s cold! I am glad for the warm comfort of my steam armor. Wiggles scouts the area while we decide where to go from here. I guess our fearless hunter is more accustomed to warmer climes and he returns to us a bit frozen and chilled. With no clear idea where to find His Most Magnificent Blueness we head north. Whiteness! After a couple of hours stumbling along we come across an immense field of dragon bones. It stretches as far as the eye can see. Wiggles the ever vigilant spots some movement. It is some sort of an undead spider creature. Syrnek calls it a Crypt Fiend. It is being followed by a troop of ghouls. We follow at a distance until they attack a caravan of Tuskars. We decide to help and join the fray. We close the distance and before the undead can react attack them from the rear, I shoot the Crypt Fiend with my new repeating pistol and Allarin hits it with fire. Atruaghin charges with a bellow and with Hammer and Horn smashes the fiend to bloody bits. Its remains continue to burn for a few seconds giving off much needed warmth to Wiggles. I wade into the melee with whirling blades of destruction, my steel skin protecting me from their ineffective clawing. With swinging steel and mighty magics we quickly overcome the attackers.

The Tuskars are grateful and agree to take us to their village to rest and warm up. Their Leader, a Master Whaler named Wilford Brimley or some such nonsense, suggests we look in the center of the Dragon Blight to find Malygos. With a resupply of Whale meat, Whale blubber brew and Whale oil we set off in the morning. After many hours of marching through the frozen waste we near the center of the Blight when we spot a dragon. No two dragons, and they are fighting. One is blue and the other looks undead. It must be one of the feared Scourge Dragons that everyone has warned us about. Filled with trepidation (I know it’s a mighty big word for a Goblin) we creep forward to see if we can assist the blue in dispatching the undead horror. Wiggles looses and arrow at max range and misses. A voice from the cold warns us not to interfere. An elf with bright blue eyes springs down from his perch on some bleached dragon bones and engages us in conversation. He introduces himself as Malygos the Spell Weaver.

With a wave of his hand and some gut wrenching nausea we are magically transported to his lair, a fairly warm cave filled with precious wonders. Before I can even lick my lips he warns us not to touch anything. Safe in his lair he questions us about our foolish intentions in his lands. We explain how we found the artifacts and how we were led to him and his vast wealth of knowledge to help us decipher the meaning of the artifacts. Fate has brought us to him. He agrees to examine the items before he eats us. Wait! What! Oh, he is only kidding. Dragon humor. He tells us that the items have something to do with the War of the Ancients, Winterwing, magic, blah, blah, blah. Something about Highborne, more killings, banishment to a place between the planes and her coming back. It all sounds boring and dangerous at the same time. He tells us that if she gets out it will be bad, well duh! The blade is a Shikkar Blade that was used to kill Highborne. The blade is supposed to be snapped off in the body. To find out more he suggests we go to Teldrassil and consult with any ancient Nightelves that might remember the War and Winterwing. Another sea voyage, Yeah! I have decided to name my new sub the C.G.S. Phlem. CGS for Chizbolt Goblin Sub. Phlem well for you know the wonderful green I painted it.

Piles of Leper Gnomes

7 hours after we rested, we are fleeing down a tunnel from the third group of leper gnomes, crowd pummlers laying destroyed in our wake.

Getting close to the hall of gears due to Wiggle’s strategic advancement toward the rear of the party.  We are being pursued, but no one was close enough to actually engage us at this point.  Atruighan leads the party, with Wiggles covering the back-trail.

Atruighan’s noble leadership leads us into another fairly large chamber, with a large number of immense machines.  Chizbolt almost faints at the sight of the Hall of Gears.  Suddenly, him and his unnatural construct suddenly turn off and start to run between two of the large machines.  He mutters something about “flogsten” as he turns.

The leper gnomes seem to be maintaining the machines, swinging from massive gear to massive gear. One seems to notice us and then they start swarming down the machines toward us.  Their numbers seem to be growing as they move toward us.

Wiggles quickly points out the safest route through the Hall and directs the group that way.  Chizbolt finds some valves and sends Igor to destroy the valves to provide us some cover.  Suddenly a chasm yawns in front of us.  Quickly jumping, we cross to the other side of the chasm.

Veering along, ducking one pipe, jumping over another, Wiggles, Atrughan, and Syrnek are struck by messenger tubes shooting across the way.  Chizbolt and Allarin quickly duck and manage to escape unharmed.  As we continue running, Syrnek manages to heal those who were injured as we keep ahead of the gnomes.

Suddenly, we find ourselves without a way to go.  Chizbolt, jumping atop one of the pipes, looks around and motions that we need to go through the floor of the platform that we are standing on.  Deftly jumping and climbing down, we manage to make down unharmed.  Chizbolt pauses momentarily, seeming to look for something, but as he doesn’t find it, quickly turns and follows the rest of us down a corridor.

As we head down a corridor between the machines, we see a series of pendulums about to swing across the corridor.  We carefully navigate the corridor, with only a few close calls.

Arriving at the door to the Landing Bay, we look back and see the horde of goblins being pressed forward by a massive construct, piloted by Thermoplug.  Chizbolt begins to examine the door to find a way to open it.  He finds a control panel, but none of us are able to translate the writing on the panel.  Wildly pressing buttons and pushing buttons, Chizbolt finally manages to open the door.

Quickly moving through the door, Chizbolt manages to find a button to close the door.  Chizbolt pulls a lever and says he has locked the door.  Turning, we see a room full of water, hence the name “Launching Bay”.  Multiple submersible’s line the walkways over the water.

A massive boom from behind as something large impacts the door behind.  Several tunnels lead off the launching bay, thankfully all labelled.  Allarin leads us toward the tunnel labelled Engineering Hall.  He is suddenly picked up off the ground as a beast jumps out of the water and bites him.

Atruighan leaps off the walkway and slams his hammer into the beast.  Wiggles looses an arrow and strikes the beast, slightly poisoning it.  Syrnek casts an aura and the beast throws Allarin up into the air and swallows him.

Treading water, Atruighan swings at the beast, striking it soundly.  Wiggles quickly looses another arrow, striking the beast in the throat.   The beast turns its massive head and bites Wiggles, seriously wounding him.  Chizbolt’s construct Igor slams its mechanical fist into the neck of the creature, felling it. Atruighan quickly slices the beast open with his hand axe and frees Allarin.

After Allarin magically cleans the beast’s guts off of himself, we continue on to the Engineering Hall.  A number of gnome statues, mostly knocked over, adorn the hall.  We quickly start our search for Grubnik Airslicer’s laboratory.  Syrnek and Atruighan identify his laboratory.  Wiggles quickly takes the items and puts them in his knapsack.

Heading back to the Launching Bay, we boarded a submersible.  Chizbolt quickly drives us out of the chamber.  We follow the tunnel for what feels like hours.  Finally, we surface in the middle of Iceflow Lake, breaking through the ice we had crossed on foot mere days earlier.

We head in to Ironforge Mountain and into Tinker Town.  We meet with Grobnik Airslicer and hand over the items that we found.  Using the Autofocus Magnetoconverter, Grobnik translates the amulet and dagger.

His contraption allows him to write the translation down without actually reading it.  He translates into Gnome.

The writing on the amulet repeatedly makes mention of someone called the Matriarch as well as a struggle against the unnatural, the arcane.  When ancient crimes are brought to justice and winters wing shrouds the world, the barriers shall fall and the world shall be reborn.

The knife speaks of The Shrouded.

Holding the knife and the amulet, Airslicer says that they are odd.  He senses something divine about them.  He wonders if we should visit the Spellweaver.  To find the Spellweaver, we must travel to Dragonblight to find Malygos the Spellweaver, leader of the blue dragonflight.

He offers a word of advice, to not venture far from Dragonblight.  Especially toward Icecrown, the land of the Lich King.

Gnome Buffet

Atruaghin slept restlessly that night. His dreams were plagued by a peaceful Tauren village. As the bulls put their young ones to sleep, allaying their fears of those who would come in the night and tip them, a simultaneous cry and flame flared in the village as arrows rained down upon them. Thunderous hoof-beats accompanied the arrival of the Centaur herd as they crushed the Winteroat Clan beneath their iron-shod hooves. The Song of Tears played impossibly over the battle, as Atruaghin watched helplessly from the vantage point of the all-seeing raven. The leader of the centaur held a massive spear in both hands, drenched in the blood of innocent cow-men. A one-horned Tauren, himself covered in the blood of centaurs and in hastily donned armor, confronted the leader, wielding a massive warhammer. The dream faded as quickly as it came, and only a voice echoed in Atruaghin’s head, directing, “The time is now…”

The party, newly outfitted by dwarf and gnome alike, set forth for Gnomeregan, the former invention-capital of the Gnomish clans. Lured by the promise of treasure if they could withstand troggs, leper gnomes, and completely unavoidable and surely lethal doses of radiation, the group set forth in high spirits. Allarin managed to make his way from Dalaran to Ironforge without issue — no doubt assisted by some scheming mage — and the group pondered what trouble Mekgineer Thermaplug might pose. Or what other interests might be investigating the abandoned city…

With the giant clockwork portal standing before them, each member of the party downed a thick vial of glowing liquid. “This will be sure to stop that radiation!” Airslicer had claimed. It had better, given the taste had just about killed them in the process. Proceeding through the entrance, the bright light of the sun quickly gave way to a semi-permanent green glow that seemed to fill the caverns. Gnome bones littered the ground, surrounded by scraps. They finally came upon the outskirts of the city proper, and Wiggles went ahead to scout. The remainder of the group saw a light coming from a nearby building, and went to investigate.

Chizbolt snuck into the new building, while Syrnek, Atruaghin, and Allarin waited outside. After several minutes, the group grew concerned for his safety, and went to investigate. The goblin was dashing back and forth amidst several inanimate golems, cackling on occasion, muttering to himself, and occasionally reaching in to pull out a random spring or gear. While the group was distracted, a leper gnome patrol seized upon these invaders in their city and unleashed one of their magnificent inventions — the Crowd Pummeler X900!

Atruaghin charged into the battle, and crushed one of the leper gnome handlers beneath his hooves, leaving naught but a glowing paste behind him. Allerin lulled their feeble minds to sleep in the midst of battle, only to have the crowd of the pummeled beneath the not-so-friendly CPX900’s clawed feet. Leper gnomes fell to blade and bow, and soon only the construct and his lackeys who dared not stride forward remained.

Chizbolt, finally coercing one of the ancient gnomish machines to work — didn’t they know how to build a proper golem? — strode forth on his own construct. His diabolical cackle preceded his ingenious green form, and man — er, goblin and machine plowed into the CPX900 and delivered a fatal blow. Discouraged, the remaining leper gnomes fled into the darkness. The party took a short rest to recuperate as the first blood had been spilled on gnomish soil.

On to Dalaran... Sort of
Our trip to Dalaran takes an odd turn

Our journey continues on through Hillsbard, on into the Alderac Mountains. We decided to skirt the southern boundary of the mountains and head straight to Dalaran.

Dalaran, covered in a blue inpenetrable dome, looms before us. We notice a rabbit running toward the dome, when he got within 20 feet, he turned into a rabbit shaped smear of ash.

Allarin walks up to the dome and disappears. While the rest of us contemplate what is going on, Fezzwick Fizzwistle the Wise snuck up behind us and introduced him self. Drawing a spoon, he demands to know what we know. He seems a bit odd, to put it lightly. He asks about the second war and how long it has been. Banter back and forth reveals that you do not get into Dalaran, you are invited in.

Fizzwhistle keeps telling us that we know nothing of the arcane, but that he does. He asks if he has told us of Sebastian, but then says he will tell us of him later. We, minus the undead, are invited to eat. Again, he asks of the second war.

During dinner, he mentions a tale he should tell of Sebastian. Following dinner, we ask for the tale and reluctantly he regales us.

The tale of two boys, Fezzwick and Sebastian. Two boys who grew up in the same village and entered Dalaran to study the Arcane arts together. When the second war arrived, they took up arms like many other.s. They fought, came back weary and studied how to prevent wars. When the Scourge war happened, they fought until the Scourge got Sebastian and Fezzwick was forced to kill his best friend.

After the story, he finally seems actually to have more mental understanding than the earlier rabbit shaped ash pile. He asks why we are there and we show him the amulet and the dagger. He examines them, seems to show some signs of understanding and then tells us that he doesn’t know what they are. But he knows someone who can help us, Grobknick Airslicer, Gnome Extraordinaire. He can be found in Ironforge. It is said he created an invention that can read languages.

Fezzwick rubs his hands together, claps, and nothing happens. He attempts it again, and we find ourselves knee deep in snow. With a quick look around, Syrnek and Wiggles quickly spot the Wednigo that is standing right near us. It roars and attacks.

Chizbolt fires his crossbow at the Wednigo, striking it. Atruaghin charges, and swings wildly, missing the Wednigo. Syrnek whispers a word, causing pain to the Wednigo. The Wednigo, blinded with pain, swings both claws at Atruaghin, but misses. Quickly drawing an arrow, Wiggles fires and hits the Wednigo. Chizzbolt and Atruaghin both miss again as the Wednigo stumbles about randomly. Syrnek gestures at Atruaghin, guiding his next action.

The Wednigo swings at Atruaghin and manages to connect with a claw, spraying Tauren blood across the snow. Wiggles again draws a breath and looses an arrow, striking the Wednigo. Chizbolt manages to correctly lead the stumbling Wednigo and another bolt appears in its chest. Syrnek places a bony hand on Atruaghin and the Tauren’s wounds seem to close. The Wednigo swings at Atruaghin, misses, and stumbles, managing to dodge Wiggle’s arrow.

Chizbolt takes careful aim, and strikes the Wednigo, almost felling it. As the Wednigo stumbles, Atruaghin strikes it with a mighty swing of his warhammer, caving in its skull.

After collecting ourselves, we see a settlement through the fog and snow. We quickly head out toward the settlement. We head into the Dragon’s Flagon, the local inn. We enter the inn, and the dwarves inside go silent. A dwarf, dressed in traveling clothes, approaches us. He introduces himself as Bran Bronzebeard.

After sharing drinks, Bronzebeard pulls out a book and starts asking Syrnek questions and taking notes in his large book. When we ask how far to Ironforge, he pulls out a map he has made and shows us where we are, Brewnall Village, west of Ironforge. We stay the night there in Brewnall, then Bran leads us to Ironforge.

The following morning, we head out of the village and out toward Ironforge with Bran leading the way across the frozen lake. Not too much longer, we see the entrance to Ironforge. We eventually arrive at the entrance, towering high above the path. Bran leads us through the military ward, and down into Tinker-Town.

Tinker Town is almost exclusively people with Gnomes. Large numbers of mechanical mounts and devices fill the halls and open areas. Bran introduces us to a Gnome, the High-Tinker Mekatorq. Bran asks the High-Tinker about Airslicer, and he points in a direction and hurries off to a council meeting. Grobnick Airslicer is a well known Gnome and we are easily led to his shop.

A muted explosion sounds from inside the shop as we approach. No one seems to react oddly, so we assume the explosion must be like those we constantly hear when Chizbolt is working on things. Bran takes leave of us and tells us we can meet him in the Hall of Explorers if we need him later.

We enter the shop, a layer of smoke covers the massive piles of junk. Chizbolt looks like he is in heaven. A soot covered Gnome with a beard greets us. Grobnick Airslicer takes us back into his lab, and looks at the artifacts that we brought.

The language has a hint of Elven and the language of the Satirs. Grobnick needs his Autofocus Magnetoconverter, which he has lost in the evacuation of Gnomeragan. He also wants some other machine that he had stored on the same shelf as the Autofocus.

We agree to go, and he agrees to help outfit us in gear.

The Insidious Matriarch of Riverwatch

And so it came to pass that in the year 30 while enjoying my fifth tankard of Raging Trollmasher in the Dragon’s Flagon of Brewnall Village when a quartet of strange companions entered the establishment. Many of the lesser travelled kinfolk in the tavern could only stare slack-jawed at these strange interlopers but I have a nose for finding allies in any situation so I quickly made their acquaintance before they turned tail and left, or worse. We spent many an hour making one another’s acquaintance over tankards of Raging Trollmasher and the Tauren warrior Atruaghin told tale of their most recent exploits far to the north in a village named Riverwatch. I have set to chronicling the totality of that adventure as I heard it from his mouth (with plenty of side comments from the rest of his company).

The company departed from Thoradin’s Wall in high spirits atop horses and beasts of burden carrying them to points northwest. Their high spirits were quickly dampened as the seasonal rains joined them on their journey. Six hours of ceaseless moisture put the whole company in dour spirits as they sought some dry place to bed for the evening. Amongst the foothills the company happened upon a small cave which had not seen the wrath of the storm gods fury and they set to drying out and getting some rest while Syrnik took watch.

Late was the hour and the rain had only briefly taken a break when Syrnik heard his name called from afar. A ghostly blue apparition, a servant of the Lich King, sought Syrnik in an effort to ‘suade him to his master’s cause. Syrnik sounded the alarm and the company found themselves in a fight against the wraith which stood a candle’s chance in a windstorm against the fury of a woken company. The wraith was dispatched, but it was merely a portent of evils that would soon beset the party.

The next morning the company continued their journey until they happened upon the town of Riverwatch. Not always welcomed in civilized parts Syrnik and Atruaghin waited outside the city while the others entered. At first glance the town appeared to be nigh on deserted; shops left untended and no sign of villages milling about. It did not take long to discover the cause for it seemed that the entirety of the village had assembled in the Church of the Holy Light. Despite its large sanctuary the church was filled to standing room only as a well dressed man waxed eloquent of the “sins of Lordaeron” and how the “Holy Light punished man consigning them to undeath.” It was clear that the preacher saw the Scourge as a retribution for the sins of mankind.

As the preacher’s words continued he was suddenly interrupted by a small well dressed girl sitting off to the side on the stage. Her voice was not her own, or rather, was a combination of not only her own voice but the voice of another. She issued an edict that shook the congregation (not to mention the members of the company who were present). “It is here” she cried “sin incarnate. It must be purged with holy fire.” At this point the company members were none too enamored with the idea of staying around but before they could quietly slip away the girl pointed directly at them. “They come with the gifts of the matriarch to fight the living sin.”

Now with all of the town’s attention upon them a quiet exit wasn’t an option. The preacher approached the company and introduced himself as The Mayor and invited the company to retrieve the remainder of their party. The company was rightly wary of the Mayor and some questioned if they could just move along and put as much distance between him and them as possible. Still, somewhere deep inside the company knew that something was amiss and it wouldn’t be right to abandon the people of Riverwatch to whatever fate was waiting for them. They soldiered on, unpacking the web of darkness that had been cast over the town of Riverwatch.

The Mayor had been sending off some seriously bad juju and it wasn’t long before the company’s wizard Allarin tapped into arcane forces to detect the presence of evil around the Mayor’s house. Most assured as the sunrise the Mayor’s house was swimming in a miasma of evil and the company forced their way inside to put it down. They met resistance in the form of a warband of gnolls. The gnolls were fierce fighters, but in the end they fell to the efforts of the company and in a back room of the mansion the company uncovered a frightful evil transformation taking place. Some great and powerful entity was consuming the Mayor, but it fled at the company’s approach taking with it the darkness from the town.

The little girl was the one to fill in the blind spots for the company. It had arrived several months before, the shadowy presence, and had taken control of her father, the Mayor. Since that time the Mayor had started making changes to the town and hired a company of gnoll bodyguards. The little girl had no choice but to play along, hoping for salvation from the terrible horror before it was too late. The entity called itself the Insidious Matriarch.

With the blight upon the town lifted and the town of Riverwatch resuming its usual business the company journeyed on along the road.

From the Journal of Allarin Mageblade
Allarin's Journal - Entry 2

It seems that surviving the flame filled airship plummeting to the earth was the high point of this journey so far. After a night spent huddled in a dark hole in the ground, waiting for a specter to reappear, my companions and I headed out toward Dalaran, taking no road but that seen by Wiggles’ trained eye and the sand stretch of shore. This turned out to be a mistake.
As Younghoof and I spoke of this group and the possibility that they could be something more, fate saw fit to grant our undead’s heartfelt wish, to see Merlocks. Slack jawed with touristic glee, he was caught unaware when they charged us, flying towards us with crud driftwood spears. Luckily for Syrnek, the forsaken seem remarkably resistant to spears, as they have few organs, and those they do have serve no virile purpose.

Wiggles, my ever stalwart ally, brought the first of the creatures down with his bow, and my moonglaive wounded two, but sadly my magic was not yet puissant enough to slay them. Younghoof and Chizbolt, yes yes I know I said I would refuse to refer to the goblin by his name but he has become a worthy ally, slew a number of the seafolk and then the Tauren charged to my aid. Even as the last merlock fell, the sound of hooves overtook the bluster of the surf.

Grievously wounded but alive, I was able bury Syrnek, as a precautionary measure, as a company of mounted warriors rode down on us. Bearing the mark, ratty and torn as they were, of Stromguard, their commander Gyrim, informed us that we were trespassing in the lands of one Gallen Trollbane. Pretentious humans, they believe that all they land they claim is inviolate, whether they have the ability to defend it or not. I tried to explain that as a part of the Alliance, they had no recourse to waylay us, but they cited the strength of their arms, and soon we were in the Trollbane camp. But not before Younghoof left a gruesome warning that these beaches and their inhabitants were not to be trifled with. I hope that the rotting heads of their loved ones staring out into the sea is a blatant enough message to the merlocks.

It was a rouse. Gyrim turned out to be Gallen, for reasons that are still beyond my intellect to comprehend. He named a need for security, as if outnumbering a group of five travelers fresh from a fight with sea scum was not security enough. Gallen presented an impassioned plea to aid him in recovering a ring, a rightful sign of his lineage to the rulers of Stromguard. It seems that this ruler in exile has been driven out by ogres and bandits from his city. One of these bandits stole said ring, how is beyond me. One would think that you would keep tokens such as this on ones person.

Gallen offered us passage through his “lands” in return for retrieving this ring from the bandit known as Daric Lightfinger, as if this were his leave to give. But I negotiated for provisions and horses on top of this, which he was quick to offer. After a short rest in their bivouac, in which I possibly learned a spell or infact wasted my time with a crazy lady, we headed into the ‘city’ of Stromguard.

If this Gallen wants this city, he is welcome too it. The fighting has taken its toll on this place and I had no wish to linger. It reminded me of my homelands, and the desire to see them restored. But restoration doesn’t come from minor skirmishes or a protracted war. I can see this clearer now. I am more convinced than ever that the runestones hold the keys to reestablishing my lands to their true glory once again.

Once in the city, Wiggles and Chizbolt scouted our route through the streets, endeavoring to find Lightfinger and to keep us out of the paths of the occupier’s patrols. Younghoof was separated from the group for a time, and when he returned a strange fire lit his eyes, his spirit shone brightly behind them. I must speak to him about what happened, but there was no time in the heat of this mission.

Chizbolt found the bandit king, and he and I snuck around to aid Younghoof and Wiggles in flanking their camp. While Lightfinger and his lackey’s preened and pranced, Chizbolt revealed one of his adroit creations that he had crafted from scavenged scrap, a bomb. With silent elation, the goblin hurled the explosive device at the largest group of the bandits. Between that and my flame hands spell, we make short work of 4 of the humans, while the rest of the group mopped up the few remaining. A short inspection of the camp lead us to finding the ring, and a handsome sampling from the bandit’s plunder.

Heading back, and the journey to Dalarn still lay before us, so we gathered out breathe and strode back out into Stromguard.

The Golden Voyage of Chizbolt

Finally! After years of hard work and toil I have been rewarded with a ticket on the maiden voyage of the ITS Zephyr. It is a top of the line luxury airship. Tomorrow we leave Bilgewater Port for a ten day tour of the Eastern Kingdoms. I can’t wait to explore the zeppelin’s mechanical secrets.

Five days out and I am impressed with all of the workings of the ship. As a goblin I can easily bluff my way into restricted areas to find out the secret steam machinations. Most of the passengers stay on the upper decks gambling and enjoying the finest Goblin cuisine. We are nearing Swiftgear Station where we will stop to refuel and resupply.

I am just about to check out the number three boiler when the ship is rocked and explosions can be heard. The fire klaxon announces that the ship has caught fire! We are tossed about as the ship begins its fiery terminal descent. OH the Humanity!

Somehow I survive the crash. Strange noises are coming from the engine room when I spy a very nice steam valve coupler that I must have. I dig it out of the wreckage and make my way out of what is left of the ship. I run into a Forsaken named Syrnek who I convince to help me carry the coupler. We barely escape before the rear half of the ship explodes. I begin to search the wreckage for more parts that I can use. As father always said,” Never let technology go to waste.”

There are a few other survivors, a Tauren, a Human, an Elf and the Foresaken I met before. As we search the wreckage I find a female human who is still alive. The Foresaken tries to help her, but she dies anyway. Before she dies she passes a dagger to him and asks him to take it to Dalaran. We are not sure where we are but we think we landed somewhere in the Arathi Highlands. A shadow passes overhead and we all feel a chill dread. The Tauren warrior, who thinks he is in charge, wants to head to the coast. No one has a better idea so we follow along. Not far from the airship crash site, we come across a crashed flyer with a dead Ork at the controls. We think he is one of the flyers that attacked the airship. Why would they attack the airship? Pirates would want the crew and cargo intact. After a few more miles the Human finds us a suitable place to make camp. Syrnek and the Tauren, Atruaghin Younghoof, stand the first watch. I am in the middle of a wonderful dream when the Tauren bellows out a challenge. I almost soil myself it is so loud. It seems that during my short rest we have been surrounded by brigands. They want us to surrender and hand over our stuff, and they call us Goblins thieves! Between the Tauren and the Elf Mage we make quick work of the brigands. Since this place is not safe we decide to head farther towards the coast. After hours of stumbling around in the dark we find an empty cave. At least we thought it was empty until a voice in the dark addresses us. Again I almost soil myself. It seems to know about us, but still asks us what we found and why we are here. It makes itself visible just before disappearing. It has a carved, mask- like face. Creepy.

I swear after meeting this ragamuffin group I have had my dreams dashed and my life threatened more than a drunk Gnome on Founder night!


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