In the eleventh session of the Grey Coast campaign on Roll20 with Old School Essentials, the party has explored the southern reaches of the coast looking for a hidden village of gnomes. Generally, the session was focus on wilderness exploration and hexcrawling.
- Moonbeam the Elf
- Doron the Elf
- Elthak-Dur the Duergar
A Trip to the Happy Dead Gnomes Hills
Moonbeam, Doron, and Elthak-Dur were warming their bones in the usual corner of the Black Boar Inn & Lodge during a windy and cloudy day in Greymouth Harbour. The local fishermen too scared to go out with the boats to fish crowded the tavern. Elthak-Dur remembered the rumours of the gnomish village in the Southern reaches of the Grey Coast. The three decided to organise an expedition to explore the area. After having hired three of the usual retainers from the garrison of the Black Company — Samson, Johannes, and Bran —, the party left the town and headed south.
The first day nothing of interest happened: they spent the whole time following the road; Moonbeam has caught a pidgeon to cook and collected some berries as a meal for the night. The second day of travel has been more interesting. When the party was reaching the crossroad south of the hills of the Windshire Mines, a band of seven knights in full plate approached the adventures. They discovered that the knights are servant of Lord Grannoth: a retired warrior and mercenary who has built a small stronghold next to the crossoroad between southern coast and the northern hills. They were not friendly and demanded a toll to let the caravan to pass. The three decided to pay rather than facing an unfair fight. The journey continued to south following the road and the weather has improved from cloudy to sunny.
The band arrived at the place south-est of the map. They reached the place signed on the map from the mines where the Gnomes’ village should be. The shore was less rocky than the north-east, and long sandy beaches interrupted the shorter grassy cliffs. Nevertheless, they did not find anything: the adventurers have inspected the coast back and forth — literally nothing. (In terms of rules, they have explored 2 hexes inch by inch in a whole day.) The day after, they have decided then to explore the inland towards the hills on the west. Soon, the party lost the direction between the woody hills, finding a terrible scene: in a clearing between the hills, the band found an acient ruin where hundreds of bones covered the floor; five gnomes had been brutally sacrificed on primitive altar representing a half-bat half-frog god. On their bodies, there was the mark of a red bear claw. The adventurers examined the place, but there was nothing of interest besides the altar.
After the macabre discovery, Doron, Elthak-Dur, and Moonbeam went to explore south while the henchmen were waiting at a camp not far from the ruins. While exploring the hills, the three met hostiles: a group of barbarian scouts dressed in rusty chainmails and furs, wearing the same mark found on the dead gnomes. At that point, they tried to escape among the woods. Still, the barbarians managed to reach them — and the battles became inevitable. Elthak-dur burnt using the Duergar psionic power Heat one of the savages. Meanwhile, Doron and Moonbeam took care of the others with longbow and sword. Doron charmed one of them with the spell Charm, turning him against his comrades. At the end of the combat, the party had interrogated the charmed barbarian: his name was Lanek, and he was a member of the Scarlet Claw tribe plaguing the hills. They are in war with the gnomes to rule on the area, that is why they had been sacrificing them to their patron god Tsathoggua. But the Scarlet Claw marauders ignored where the village could be located as well — as if the gnomes had hidden it with some sort of illusion. After having pillaged the belongings of the fallen enemies, the party decided to go back to the Greymouth Harbour.