This was actually the first Tellurian storyline and the reason Tellure was created. Play has been sporadic and infrequent, however. The story is roughly contemporary with Tellurian Tales, though set farther north. It started as a 3.0 campaign, gradually shifted to 3.5, swerved briefly into z20, to 3.5 d20house, and finally 5e. The illustrious title is a relatively new addition (2008, after 4 years of play).
Omri is a young woodland fighter from the great forests of the Eldessa. When she was young, her half-elf mother was killed by an owlbear. Trained in combat and survival by her human father, she set out to seek adventure shortly after his death.
In the wilds of the Hurloon, the main wagon is attacked by kobolds, who abscond with a strange wooden box. Jolberg orders its retrieval. Omri and Sly track the kobolds to a small cave, outside of which Sly is killed in a crossbow skirmish. Armed with Sly's looted pocket contents, Omri braves the dungeon and retrieves the apparently unopenable box.
Continuing the journey, the wagon is caught up in a fight between a few fleeing kobolds and pursuing goblins, which quickly becomes a three-way battle. The party survives without further loss of life, but Jhohansen is very shaken. During their evening camp, Jimmy calms him by describing the light that shines on the Shylorien river and how, for Jimmy, that light is like the one carried in the hearts of the heroes of old.
The next day, the party reaches the small old city of Broade. Jolberg pays Omri a heavy bonus for her retrieval of the box.
Awakening in the town jail, Omri meets the drunken and flower-bedecked barrister named Goedfry in the next cell. Discussing her situation, he suggests that she has now become the Baron-Heir's pawn in a political test of the new magistrate.
In the morning, the mostly-recovered Goedfry serves as her court-appointed council. Baron-Heir Brunswick tries to throw his weight around while charging Omri with extreme negligence and calling for an investigation of Sly's death. The magistrate largely refuses to cave. In the end, however, he does sentence Omri to two days community service in the catchpoll militia for "conduct unbecoming an honest citizen", though he charges the Baron-Heir for all court fees.
On the third day out of Broade, the entire catchpoll is recalled by sounding horns to assault an ancient old hall carved into the hills. Entering with the rest of the troops, Omri notices that the kobolds here are ravaged by some strange disease marked by dark bloody phlegm--symptoms that have been seen recently in the ranks of the catchpoll itself. During the battle, the kobolds manage to collapse the stone ceiling, trapping Omri, Jimmy, and Ben in a side corridor.
Seeking an exit, they follow the corridor deep into a natural cave system. Ben reveals that he possesses a unique magical capability, as well as being plagued by strange and prophetic dreams. The party eventually finds an ancient staircase leading up through a skull-decorated archway. Forcing their way past the portcullis, they are attacked by various walking undead that wander the dust-filled rooms. Jimmy finds a strange wooden pendant in a hidden alcove. Shortly thereafter, the party encounters a shadow that slays Jimmy--only to have the pendant spring to fiery life, reviving Jimmy and banishing the shadow. Jimmy is left with a scar of the obliterated pendant's design: a lightning bolt clutched in a fist.
Entering a more recently-settled region of the dungeon, the party finds a number of prison cells, one of which is occupied by a blind old cleric named Marcus Wabe. Upon being freed, Marcus explains that this dungeon serves as a small campus for the Ars Necromancy. However, due to the outbreak of a strange plague, the necromancers recently fled, leaving their prisoners behind. Perhaps the first to die of the plague was the kobold in the neighboring cell. This kobold was captured by the necromancers while he sought a safe place to which his deep-dwelling, plague-ravaged tribe might flee.
Marcus directs the party through the remainder of the dungeon system, his magic proving helpful in both repelling undead and masking the party's presence while they pass through a pit teeming with zombies and skeletons. The final exit to the surface is guarded by the school's remaining fanatical prefect and his commanded undead, which the party dispatches after a confusing battle in the depths of a summoned mist. Jimmy discovers that he now possesses unexplained magical abilities. The four adventurers emerge at least into the fresh air of a coming sunset.
Upon a sunny Broade day, three friends did march to battle Within the catchpoll's ranks they trooped amongst the cattle For slaughter came their way beneath the Sister's Three-- Ill kobolds on their flanks bent that stony roof to knee. CHORUS: And so down, on down, through the Hollow, through caverns both great and grim; They tread upon paths unhallowed, through shadows both dark and dim. Into the twisting tunnels fled Omri, James, and Ben And the blood did flow in runnels when the undead came to them; Shades and death and corpses hounded them through the black And the dead themselves did shiver when those three fought them back. CHORUS And a fourth they then did rescue; blind Marcus brought them light. And through the Ars Necromancy they waged that holy fight! And now those four do wander, seeking for truth and right, And they will pursue the darkness wherever it cowers from sight! CHORUS
Solomon Jack then persuades the party to accompany him into the wilds of Dire Ganner. Rumor has it that a similar disease plagues the town of Orwill there. In addition, the region's goblins grow restless and "fish men" have been sighted along the coast. Perhaps some clue to this strange disease and general unrest can be found in the barren hills of Dire Ganner.
Ben leaves the party to pursue a particularly vivid dream-vision. Though officially checked out of the catchpoll by the local reeve's office, Omri and Jimmy have a run-in with a drunk and bewildered Captain Geraald seeking to rally the remnants of his command. Jimmy explores his unlocked arcane magical abilities, but also seeks spiritual guidance concerning the god Heironeous, whose lightning-bolt mark he now bears. From the local church, he obtains a copy of Codex Heironic: Chivalry, Honor, Justice.
Solomon Jack, Omri, Jimmy, and Marcus head towards Dire Ganner. On the second night out, they are attacked by a pride of lion-like krenshars. The next morning, they meet a small family on the road just in time to see an eagle fly off with their small baby. Intrigued by the description of a gold band around one of the eagle's legs, the party agrees to follow the eagle's path to a nearby hilltop in the vague hopes of retrieving the child.
The hilltop proves to hold a small cave system, hollowed out and occupied by a local goblin death cult. Omri, turned invisible by Jack's magic, sneaks past the outer guards and into the inner sanctum. There, next to a black altar and a deep pit, she finds a wiry, crowned goblin holding both the baby and an ornate dagger. However, in slipping past the curtain into the sanctum, she alerts a lone outer guard, who raises the alarm. The priest-king goblin puts down the baby and transforms into a great boar, which begins to sniff the air. Cornered and eventually rendered visible, Omri yields to the lead goblin's call for parley.
Impressed by her infiltration, the goblin--Dorag Garm--bargains "a life for a life": the child for the head of Myrksog. Myrksog, a bugbear from the north, has recently assumed control of a neighboring tribe of goblins. Recruiting refugee goblins as well as some of Dorag's own flock, he has formed a cult-army that worships Kaa'Glick Agron, The Mover in Darkness. Myrksog leads this band of fanatics in raids on the human town of Orwill. Where he walks, a dark contagion seems to follow. Omri accepts Dorag's bargain, and she is escorted from the goblin holdout to rejoin her party.
Omri then repeats the attack, backed up by her companions. Questioning the two surviving goblins, they learn Myrksog's location. Leaving the bound, unconscious goblins behind, Jack magically disguises the party as orcs escorting Marcus as prisoner. They reach Myrksog's hideout, the entrance of which is guarded by a hobgoblin, orc, and three bored goblins. The hobgoblin guard in charge refuses them access to Myrksog. Jack charms him, but then the guard's orc companion balks. The hobgoblin passes through the metal grille door to talk to Myrksog. Jack then puts two of the goblins to sleep, though this enrages the orc. Omri dispatches him quickly, along with the lone surprised goblin.
The hobgoblin returns while Jack is hiding the last of the bodies. Wary, he calls out through the locked door. Spotting Jack, he dashes back down the hall, though Jimmy manages to wound him with a crossbow bolt shot through the grille before he can make it around a corner. Omri begins working on wrenching the grille loose, her strength fortified by Marcus. However, before the gate gives way, Omri feels a moment of cold fear, and then complete darkness falls upon the party, followed by a stream of small hurled stones. Despite blind Marcus's keen hearing, he and Jimmy fail to pinpoint the creature hurling the stones from beyond the grille. Omri finally manages to snap the lock mechanism and tear the grille open. The party dashes into the thick blackness of the hallway as a loud horn begins to sound, likely summoning the surrounding orcs and goblins to Myrksog's lair.
Emerging from the darkness into a narrow tunnel, an invisible voice questions their intent. When Omri reveals they are coming for Myrksog, the voice directs them to a secret passage in the rear wall of Myrksog's room, claiming that "the eye of Dorag Garm sees all!" Sneaking through the passage and down a flight of stairs, the party discovers a shadowy torch-lit grotto where three cloaked figures stand in discussion, while two pale, naked, hairless dwarves stand chained to one side.
Made invisible by Jack again, Omri slips down behind the larger figure--Myrksog the bugbear. When Solomon Jack's foot slips slightly while sneaking down the incline behind her, the other two cloaked figures snap to attention--one of them immediately pierced by one of Jimmy Olsen's crossbow bolts. Battle ensues. The two smaller figures reveal themselves to be savage fishmen, who launch themselves at Solomon Jack. Myrksog proves to be a competent sorcerer, levitating out of reach and blasting the party with a wand of burning hands. However, pierced by Jimmy's bolts and singed by Omri's alchemist's fire, Myrksog is forced to descend once more in order to flee.
The battle rages on, as first Omri sneaks invisibly up on Myrksog a second time, and then as the bugbear casts mirror image on himself and levitates out of reach once more. Meanwhile, one of the dwarves is slain by a fishman even has his dwarf companion uses the chain from his own slave collar to choke the fishman from behind. Together, Jack and Omri dispatch the fishmen, and, with an heroic effort, Omri lands a killing blow on Myrksog before he can slip away down a dark tunnel. With her kukri, she slices his head free from his body.
The party then regroups, scanning the area for magical items. They find that Myrksog and the fishmen were exchanging chests. In one, from the fishmen, are uneven gold coins, uncut gems, and a fine silver-filigreed scimitar. But most notable are the unusually large coins of some white metal imprinted on one side with a wrinkled, tulip-like shape. In the other chests, once destined for the fishmen, are various hardy food supplies, canvas, rope, and mining tools. These chests are marked the words "tribute" and "Kaa'glik Agron", which Solomon Jack translates as Goblin for "the Mover in Darkness".
The party also finds, in a shrine-like alcove, a small white statue, about 18 inches tall, of a similar tulip-like shape as printed on the white coins. Closer inspection reveals that it is in fact comprised of myriad graven tentacles, writhing and twining skyward. Solomon Jack bags the statue for later study. He also converses with the surviving dwarf. Though his Dwarven dialect is strange, the party learns his name is Nüldar Tor. He warns them off the one obvious tunnel leaving the cavern, explaining that he came from that way and it leads only to the mining slave camp of the fishmen. Captured farther below and to the north, he has been held in bondage by them for several weeks.
Omri wanders to the far side of the cavern to look for other exits or hiding places, but the undercut stone edge of the grotto's lake suddenly crumbles away! Omri slides into the swirling current, quickly pulled through a submerged tunnel. On the other side, the water shallows and slows again in a much smaller cave. Emerging from the water, Omri surprises a sobbing, masturbating goblin. Once convinced that Omri is not about to kill him, the goblin, "Shroom", attempts to communicate in his limited Common how he came to be trapped in this cave by some eight-legged beast on the other side of the narrow entrance.
Omri squeezes through the tunnel, sword at the ready, to find a giant hunting spider waiting in the cavern beyond. It scurries toward her and, after a few fumbling blows in the narrow confines of the tunnel, she manages to stab the beast. It retreats, and Omri calls for Shroom to follow her out past the thing. However, the spider leaps down upon the fleeing Shroom, sinking its fangs into him. Omri pauses, then strides back and cleaves the thing's back. She pours one of her cure light wounds potions down the quivering Shroom's throat, and he weeps that she came back to save him. Shroom presses his prized possession--a shiny red stone--onto her as a gift.
Leaving the spider's den, the pair find the sewage dump of Myrksog's hideout. Shroom slogs through the effluence and scrambles up through the toilet bench opening in the ceiling above. Omri follows more gingerly, only to find that Shroom has vanished. Passing through a deserted barrack room, she finds herself once more in the passage to Myrksog's room. Outside, she can hear raised goblinoid voices, and so she hurries to rejoin her party through the secret door to the grotto.
The party is relieved to see her. Jimmy is wet and bruised from trying to find Omri in the strong current on a line held by Marcus and Jack. They rest for a while. Solomon Jack translates more of Nüldar's tale: The dwarf says an empire of slavers is rising below, ruled by the Beast Unseen. He greatly desires to return to his people to warn them of what he now knows. Conference with Solomon Jack and his knowledge of geography suggests that a surface entrance that Nüldar knows must lie on the Isle of Rath to the north. Jimmy promises to help Nüldar to reach it; the dwarf swears his life to the party in return for their freeing him and ensuing aid.
The party's rest is disturbed by the sounds of a scuffle outside the secret door, with raised orc and goblin voices. Once things have quieted, the party returns to Myrksog's chambers, where they find it splashed with blood around an orc body. Nüldar, already carrying Myrksog's heavy mace, dons the fallen orc's armor.
Again disguised as orcs with prisoners, the party leaves the stronghold. As they enter the hills, they are approached by another orc. Through Solomon Jack, they learn from the orc that it seems that Myrksog's army has fallen into infighting, largely along orc and goblin lines. Myrksog's goblin advisor claimed Myrksog was dead and attempted to assume control, but charges were leveled that he was a usurping spy for Dorag Garm. Myrksog is nowhere to be found. When the orc begins to harass the "prisoners", Omris dispatches him.
Once in the hills, the party sleeps in a shallow cave without a fire. Marcus relates his own story. Some years ago, as a battle cleric of Heironeous, he was mustered for an impending orc horde attack. In the camp, a hungry young villager was caught stealing food. The law of that land was clear: the villager should lose his hand for the offense. However, the different assembled ranks and orders quickly fell into factions over the issue. Arguments grew heated. Some felt the law must be upheld; some thought the young man should be pardoned; and others through the punishment should simply be lessened. Distracted by their own in-fighting, the camp was unprepared for a pre-dawn sneak attack by the orcs.
Although the priests and paladins were victorious, their loses were significant. As a young Marcus stood in the morning light, with the battlefield before him littered with crows and corpses and the overflowing hospital tents filled with moans of agony behind him, he cursed to his god: "By what I see here with mine eyes, you are a god of neither Good nor Order." He then heard a voice reply, "Then look not with your eyes!" In that moment, he was struck blind. Dark times followed for Marcus. He eventually found his faith in the Light once more, but not in any god.
Jimmy is somber after this tale, fingering the Heironeous scar on his chest. As the party discusses, it is unclear whether Heironeous truly played a part in Jimmy's resurrection or the awakening of Jimmy's arcane powers. As Marcus states, the gods are distant and their wills unclear. Only faith can guide us, but each upon our own path.
Ducking behind a low hill, the party plans. Jimmy proposes they emulate the old tale of Sir Sky Walker, who sent his magic sword ahead of him with his squire Arteo into a den of thieves so that he might enter unarmed. Jimmy takes Omri's sword--which, thanks to a crystal of returning, she can summon to her hand with a thought. Solomon Jack turns Jimmy invisible, and Marcus fortifies Omri with various magicks. Jimmy, Nüldar, and Omri approach the mouth of the goblin dugout.
Omri is ordered to enter alone and unarmed. Jimmy invisibly follows. Led into the cult's inner sanctum once more, Omri finds that the baby is still there unharmed--but the rest of the family has been captured! The young couple is chained to the back wall, but their older companion has already been eviscerated on the altar next to a well. Given Myrksog's head, a smug Dorag is happy to turn over the baby. When Omri asks for the prisoners too, Dorag explains that he has heard from his spies that Myrksog had a strange statuette. He will trade their lives for the statue. With half of the cult watching, Omri backs down from a surprise attack. She requests leave to fetch the statue.
Exiting the warren, Omri, Jimmy, and Nüldar then seek another entrance. On the backside of the hill, behind some bushes, they find one. The tunnel opens up into a small cave system, surprisingly clean. Jimmy hits the gelatinous cube first, leaving Omri and Nüldar to hack him free. Jimmy is paralyzed and burned by acid, but the effects pass with a bit of time and a healing potion. Pressing on, they find a small pool littered with bones. As they wade through, a swarm of rats pours from cracks and holes in the wall. Jimmy is able to put his wand of burning hands to good use. They pry open a cracked and partly submerged door to find themselves at the base of the well leading up to the cult's inner sanctum.
Nüldar proposes in gesture and guttural Dwarven that he circles around front again to provide a distraction. Jimmy and Omri decide it's better to stick together and that Nüldar hold the entrance to sanctum. The group climbs quietly out of the well, surprising the 2 of the 3 goblins in the room. A shout goes up, and battle ensues. Dorag Garm steps out from behind a curtain, calling for his minions as his skin hardens like bark. Omri and Jimmy dispatch the goblins, but then, to Dorag's call of "Rufie!", an ogre strides out from behind another curtain! Dorag then puts a great fear into Nüldar, who flees in terror from the room. Omri and Jimmy dodge around the ogre, alternating their attacks between him and Dorag. They can hear Nüldar bellowing in the hallway, and the sounds of metal on metal.
Dorag throws handfuls of fire at them, but, when pressed, he retreats into the stonework of the wall itself. In his absence, Rufie grows uncertain and Omri tries to talk him down. However, when Dorag returns and urges him on, Rufie brings Omri to her knees with a mighty blow of his club. Gulping a potion, Omri then throws an pouch of alchemist's fire at him while Jimmy blasts him with a magic missile. Overwhelmed and in pain, Rufie leaps into the narrow well.
Dorag circles the party to better advantage, but he is blocked by the sudden return of a bloody and furious Nüldar. Throwing up an obscuring mist fails to save Dorag from the onslaught of the angry dwarf. Omri begins to hack the prisoners free of their chains. When Rufie hauls himself out of the well--sobbing and growling--and begins his onslaught again, Jimmy drops him with two well-placed crossbow bolts.
The battle is over. The impassive ugly eagle that sat on its stand through the whole battle raises its wings, circles the room once, and flies up out of a natural chimney.
Pilfering the trinkets and valuables that Dorag Garm had stored, the trio helps the reunited family out of the warren. Jimmy covers the body of the grandfather with a blanket. Reunited with Solomon Jack and Marcus, the party tracks down the wagon and presses on to Orwill.
SD Emporium : Tellurian Tales : Omri
Last Edited: 05 Jul 2015|
©2007 by Z. Tomaszewski