The Hippo's Helpers
- Find his bride
- The feeling of a job well done.
The party are hired to fulfill a promise to find bride for a Hippo. They head to Terranova and visit a Drow city, situated in the swamps, and rescue a Hippocampus. While departing the swamps they explore a ruined sun temple. The introduce the Hippocampus to the Hippo and leave the blissful couple, returning to Seagate.
Some years ago a guild party, but did not deliver, to find a bride for a sentient Hippo that lived in a high mana zone.. A second party were set to find the bride but were distracted. The Hippo has grown in influence, and followers, and is chasing the guild to fulfil its commitment. The Hippos has found his Bride, a powerful entity held captive in Terranova.
Ithilmor, intrigued by the romantic tale, convinced Turf to organise a party to finally find the bride. The guild parties had already convened for the season and a call was put out to those not engaged, leading to volunteers of varied quality and morality. Gnashdar, an Orc, quickly volunteered - he is convinced he Turf and Ithilmor are his parents. Perhaps he has been head-butted too many times. The party discovered noone was an experiences Military Scientist.
Terranova is a great distance away and we make enquiries on how to get there. Somehow word of our enquiry reach Lord Azure (spies in Seagate?) and he offered transport the party in exchange for access to mines in Erehwon. Turf declined this offer.
We discover revealed a ship, the Bounty, is on the way to Terrnova, that would welcome the party as it is being harried by the evil Captain Christian – a rival that who is known to dabble in piracy. Captain Bligh captain was a large many with a steely gaze, a large red beard platted into pigtails who wears an Admirals hat and red velvet trousers.
The next morning Gnashdar fails to appear at the ports, after waiting impatiently Turf summons him back. A naked and tied up Gnasdar appears, he explains he was drugged at the pub by a female Orc and taken some distance away, she was muttering about his rightful place as Baron. We are at loss to think who would want to kidnap Gnashdar. After this delay the party board the ship and make themselves comfortable, the ship is highly magical and departs for Hobart bay.
There is singing from the hold, which is explained by the crew as a magical melody sung by Sprites sprite that keep away sea creatures and pacify the locals. Scab sneaks a look onto the hold and is feared by a hideously looking seahorse, he flies off the ship and we spend some time hearding him back to the ship. Turf traps him in a cage to keep him out of trouble.
Just over four weeks of uneventful sailing the Bounty arrives at Hobart. Debarking the ship the party encounter a small frontier town with about 150 hardy people living there. The humidity is terrible and Scab looks uncomfortable in his shaggy fur. The inhabitants consist of humans, about 5 ½ feet tall mostly wearing hooded leather cloaks, and reptilian froggish like people. Making enquiries for a guide the party discover there are few willing options, they finally settle on Abe, a grizzled old man who offers to guide the party into the swamps but wont go close to any Drow cities.
Sven is able to make an exceptionally high quality skiff, which impressed Abe, and produces a lamp that keeps away insects. Our journey into the swamps in surprisingly comfortable. Travelling through the swamps for many days we pass many ruins, but leave them alone. Abe explains that a long time ago there was a thriving civilisation in the swamps but it fell into ruins, the Frog people do not speak what happened.
Travelling on the skiff passes ruins that is surrounded by flickering underwater lights, most of the party and charmed and want to swim with the lights. Snapping out of it we head away at speed. There are many will—o-wisps in the swamp and we see a large vessel travelling silently through the swaps, it is only the obstruction of the wisps that brings it to the parties attention. We investigate once its passed and find large foot prints – the boat ‘walks’ through the swamps. Abe confirms it’s a Drow transport contraption made from bones. The transport move in a straight line and plows through any obstructions, but nothing seems to damage anything. The transport is believed to be from house Ishtar. We discover a magical web around the city that detects movement, we have previously activated this but now we know we can avoid them, we think the city is 17 miles away.
As we get within a few miles Abe wants to depart, Sven creates another boat for him and he sails off. The party encounter a Drow city, it sits 800 ft above the sways inside a high iron bowel that sits on gigantic iron pillars, each which has a spiral staircase proving access to the city. Sailing towards a pier beside a pillar, bubbles and shapes in the water flank the skiff. Heavily cloaked figures guard there pier and watch he party carefully, fortunately we all look like Drow due to Viloas magic. Presenting papers, we claim to be from house Savage Butterfly, visiting from a distant city. Walk up the staircase we work out quickly that all the iron will stop the party accessing any mana. Ithilmor explains there are water fountains in the city that provide mana, these are charged by sentient sacrifice, the party sweat and reach for exotic items.
We are provided a house to stay in discover the presence of house Arkarden, known for trading in exotic creature. There are three temples within the house grounds;
• T1: Gremory - Salamanders. Greater Basilisk.
• T2: Krokel - Giant Alligator
• T3: Ipos – geese and other creatures including a multi legged fire breathing fire creature.
Many of the party are muttering about being around so many evil drow, but restrain themselves from acting. Talking the geese we discover there is a water elemental living until the city.
Returning to the house the party discuss the next move, without access to mana our actions are limited. The majority of the party refuse to use the taps to obtain mana and the remainder agree. Scab seeks insight from a powerful entity, the Widow, via a spider and receives a painful vision of geese and pond in garden. We receive a visit from House Arath, and turn down and invitation, the political games have started and the party need to act quickly before they are pulled into venomous politics.
Visiting House Arkaden we see many hideous creatures, including demonic beings, but discover an water horse (Hippocampus) imprisoned, chained and in a pond. A Drow body floating in the pond, life is perilous here!
The party discuss various options for liberating the Hippocampus and decide to engage in politics, an appointment with Lady of the City – Estael the Eight. Ithilmor navigates the political minefield and negotiate for an ambassadorial residence in the city of Savage Butterfly. Estael tried to pull the party into complex politics and Ithilmor manages to extricate us. A dinner is arranged in our honor and the meal consists of may strange meat that appear to be from sentient beings. Most of us leave hunger, except Scab who is bloated from such a large meal.
We have negotiated to gain possession of the Hippocampus in exchange for our alliance. The next day we head straight to the take Hippo, House Arkaden are twitching in anger but do not act as it will earn the emity of Estael, priests that do object are ruthlessly killed. The party depart the city immediately and, drop holy water in the main fountain on the way out.
Once we are miles away from the city we skin change the Hippocampus to dog and falls out of chains. The Chains burn and we drop into the swamp. We exchange stories with the Hippocampus and she thanks us for freeing her, explain she was captured by Malcamph the Huntress. She is interested in courting the Hippo.
Sailing back to Hobart Bay we find Abe making his way back, he transfers to our skiff. He discuss our activities and he explains Malcamph the Huntress lives north of the Bay, but not as far as the colony of hobbits.
We decide to explore a ruined temple of the way back. Much digging later we gain access, passing a few traps we find what appears to be a Temple to the Sun. Skeletons magically appear and start attacking the party, they fire solar rays from their eyes. Scab earth tremors the alter the skeletons are destroyed. Viola uses a segment of the sun to defend herself and this glows and heats up, buring its way out for the temple into the sky.
Many weeks later the party find their way into the Hippos town, situated inside the magical zone with many unusual magical effects and zones, as well as many pools of lava. The town is a high mana zone, containing a mix of survivors from the war, all worshippers of the Hippo. Scab gloats about feeding hobbits to the Hippo and almost gets himself hung by Turf. The Hippocampus seems to get on well with the Hippo and is happy with us leaving here there. The party depart back to Seagate.
- Captain Bligh
- Spratley - Ships boy
- Wilkions – cook
- Azia-tongue, Bone and Harris – topmen
- Spate – mate
- Riley – deck hand
- Abe – a guide to the swamps.
- Malcamph the Huntress - a hunter than capture the Hippocampus