Greetings and salutations! When we first started our game back in December of 2014, I never expected or knew how much my friends would become enamored by Dungeons & Dragons. As we near our one-year anniversary of adventures, I look back on this moment when it all started, when the brand new 5th Edition was only a few months old, and (you can’t see it) my grin is from ear-to-ear. Our adventures began here, using an adventure hook from Tyranny of Dragons and within 2 sessions I completely abandoned the storyline and went with the narrative’s natural course. I will always look back on this fond moment, when the players were new and did not know what to expect. I am proud of them and their accomplishments both in-game and out, I am very grateful to return to this wonderful genre after nearly a 4 year hiatus. I made this blog with the intent of showcasing our adventures, because the wonderful aspect of D&D are the memorable moments we make while playing. I hope you enjoy our recap and find some good memories out of it as much as we have.
Episode 0: The Gathering Storm
Along the broken jet-black crag, in a snow-covered forest, a blue scaled dragonborn traverses through the frozen landscape. He strides confidently through the jagged paths of parted underbrush and black elm, this realm has been his home for several years after all. The sound of small wings zip through the bushes and a tiny winged humanoid creature with black hair with a black uniform hovers before the dragonborn’s path.
“Her majesty wishes to speak with you, follow me,” stated the nixie.
The dragonborn grunts and nods, following the sporadic flight of the nixie until they found themselves in an open snow and ice-covered field. Tall columns formed into broken arches, stained glass murals are laced between the columns to form a semblance of walls. A black, stone throne sits at the center of this supposed ‘court’, with a tattered red and gold trimmed carpet leads to the throne’s base. Two figures stand at the throne’s base, one of them was a drow adorn in black studded leather and a rapier, while the other was a blue-toned minotaur with a jagged, black stone axe; they were both the Queen’s lieutenants, Aethis and Bergarth. The two remarked at the dragonborn’s arrival, a few short jabs and threats before they departed from the dragonborn’s company. An icy wind encircled the field, raven feathers danced along the throne to take the shape of an enormous woman clad in an intricate and lacy black dress with a matching veil over her face. An icy crown rested on the brow of her head, her skin was pale and almost blue, with a pendant in the shape of a snowflake hangs on her neck. This is Mab, the faerie Queen of Air and Darkness, the leader of the unseelie fey. The dragonborn remained still, full of contempt and annoyance, another grand display by the queen of all unseelie fey.
“Breadon, I bestow upon thee a task, you are to retrieve something precious from an ancient foe” she commanded.
Breadon Turnuroth, the last surviving member of the Clan Turnuroth, glared at the faerie queene before asking further about his task at hand. The greater fey replied with metaphors and imagery, the dragonborn was annoyed at this point and simply demanded a more direct answer. Mab smiled and replied, “I desire the face of a dragon.” With a simple gesture the fey queen dismissed Breadon, and the dragonborn found himself outside of a clutch of hills, storm clouds looming over the horizon and a loud crackling roar echoes from its center. Breadon begins his trek into the hills and mist, unsure of what lies in wait.
Elsewhere, a man on a rickety cart pulled by a reddish-orange mule traverses through a dirt road toward a stormy hillside ahead. Rather tall in stature, dressed rather casually with a duster and a staff close by, a deep shade of facial hair hangs over his jaw. A large mastiff sits in the cart, with various equipment covered by a large piece of cloth. Arcaelus Blackfire has journeyed for nearly a week from the city of Illinathar, the trip has made him rather weary, as his demeanor details his desire to finish his business at his destination and return promptly. The mages of the Purple Order tasked Arcaelus to retrieve supposedly important relics found in a dig-site not far from a small village within the region. The seasoned mage did not mind being an errand boy with for the council of mages, but the look of the storm clouds ahead left him with some concerns.
A passing caravan leaving from the direction of the nest of hills ahead, the mage stopped them for directions. They confirmed that indeed, the small town of Greenest lies beyond those hills but the fog and mist had made it treacherous to venture further and thus the caravan turned back. The mage gave his thanks to the caravan riders and rode towards the rolling hills, stopping short of the fog and securing the cart with his mule and dog. The wizard cautiously stepped into the fog, unaware of the probable dangers ahead. Lightning and thunder sounded beyond the hills.
Berk was a large town acting as the central hub for most of the other villages and towns, distributing goods for the majority of the region. A tiefling woman traverses through the market stalls and trades square, admiring the many works and wares shifting between carts and wagons. She pulls out a sheet of parchment full of scribbles, with a notable circling of the name “Elias”. The tiefling eventually finds herself at the town hall, hoping to acquire more information on her quest at hand. She finds the mayor and a gnome businessman discussing the issue of trade from a nearby town suffering from delays. The tiefling realizes the town is the same as her destination and inquires further with the gnome businessman, the gnome wanted to learn of the status of his goods and accepted the woman’s help.
“Aydan Eleánore Althaus,” she introduced herself. The gnome was happy to accommodate her lodgings and even was willing to provide a horse for her.
The next day, she readied her horse and set off to the nearby town of Greenest. Along the way, she stumbled upon a caravan leaving from the direction of the small town, quickly deducing that caravanners were in fact the same ones her gnome acquaintance was seeking. She informed them of their tardiness and distress of their employer, the group reluctantly set off in hurried pace. Possibly the easiest job thus far, Aydan thought. She leads her horse along the dirt road, galloping towards the rolling hills and an oncoming storm ahead.
The woods have been his home for most of his life, the air was humid and wet, a sign of a coming storm nearby. A half-elf draped in leather with vines in his hair forges along the various bushes for some berries before hearing shouts nearby. He darts toward the noise and finds a small human family running desperately, he confronts the family and asks what troubles them. Upon further inquiry, the half-elf learns of raiders in a nearby town and that the family was one of several that fled. After reassuring the family, the half-elf took his leave and ventured toward the edge of the woods he called home.
At the edge, the half-elf noticed the gathering storm clouds and decided to make a small campfire and observe the weather for a while. A wooden totem carved into the shape of a crescent moon with three stars remained gripped in his hands, the half-elf channelled the divine and natural energies around him, seeking guidance from the goddess Lystrata, lady of the moon. No direct guidance or inspiration from his prayers, but the druid continued to watch over the hillside and migrated towards a known bridge that crossed the stream that separated the woods and the neighboring town.
Several hours passed until the sound of a galloping horse from the hills emerged, its cloaked rider held onto the reins but struggled to make the sharp turn and fell. The druid quickly rushed to aid the probable injured rider. The half-elf finds a tiefling woman in leather armor with the symbol of the sun and the moon encased in a seal, the woman thanks the half-elf, introducing herself as Illya. She had fled from the town of Greenest to look for help, the druid offer his aid to the woman and to the town’s plight.
“Jimmy Galanodel,” he remarked. Jimmy checked on the horse and with Illya nearby they returned back towards the foggy hills and the looming storm beyond.
That concludes Episode 0. If you have questions, want to share your own D&D moments, or other thoughts; write it down in the comments section below. If you want to see updates on future adventures, please follow on our Facebook and Twitter pages. Thank you for reading and we hope to share more about their adventures.