Skulls and Shackles

Session #20: The Island of Empty Eyes

This session included Kanger, Hobbes, Levin, Pirate Captain Pirate, and Eremander. After having won the Regatta, the party made preparations for their journey to Sindus. Levin ordered an Insistent Doorknocker, a Lyre of Building, and a Marble Elephant Figurine of Wondrous Power, however the party would have to wait for these items to come into stock. Thus, they headed out to Sindus. They arrived at a massive dock, perhaps used by the cyclopes of the island and walked along the beach. There, they found a massive amount of crabs which Kanger proceeded to attack. Unfortunately, Hobbes was the only party member who could harm swarms so they were forced to retreat. During this time, they explored the swamp and killed a massive anaconda, explored a forest and killed some treants, and explored another beach and killed a sargassum fiend. They then found themselves at a grotto and met the nereid Sefina. She appeared trustworthy to the party so they allowed her to remain on the island. After this conversation the party returned to Port Peril to pick up their items. They then discussed what they could do against the crabs. Pirate Captain Pirate suggested lighting them on fire so Levin decided to purchase a large amount of alchemist's fires. Hobbes and Pirate Captain Pirate also came up with the idea of making the elephant fly so that the swarms can't hit them. So, the party returned to Sindus, Hobbes casted fly on the elephant, and the bombing began! After killing one of the three swarm, two massive shark-eating crabs arrived pursued the party. Eremander had the elephant fly higher, however, the crabs stood on top of one another so they could reach it. The crab grabbed the elephant and dragged it, causing Eremander to plummet to the ground. The party quickly disposed of the massive crabs and the swarms ran away. This is where the session ended. 

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Session #19: The Free Captains Regatta

This session included Hobbes, Levin, Eremander, and Kanger. After the successful looting of the Brine Banshee, the party returned to Port Peril to sell a lot of loot they retrieved. Afterwards, they waited for the remaining days, relaxing and preparing. On the day of the race, they sailed the Jenny to Cauldron Rock where they saw Tessa, Pierce, Merrill, and the Wormwood, Barnabas Harrigan's ship. The party met with The Master of Gales, lord of Drenchport, who discussed the rules and the route of the Regatta. With this established, the race begins! The Jenny began with an excellent head start as they sailed the route. The party encountered many storm hazards throughout the race and various other threats. The main ones including Hirgenzosk, the dragon turtle, who capsized a competing ship, and a massive lightning elemental. The final foe was Zedonehz, the manticore from Morrison's past, who was on the Wormwood. He flew onto the Jenny to attack the party. Zedonehz was finally defeated by Eremander, who crushed his skull, turning his body to dust and ending him for good. With Zedonehz defeated, the Jenny crossed the finish line, winning the Regatta. Not only was the party met with roaring applause from the spectators, but they were granted a large amount of gold, the symbol of honor amongst the Shackles, and the deed to the island of Sindus, Hobbes' home island that was taken over a few years ago. The Master of Gales told the party if they are to clear out all threats on the island within 3 months, a few members of the Pirate Council will be visiting their island, so the party will also have to prepare a feast for them. The session ended with The Master of Gales leaving The Jenny and the party contemplating what to do next.

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Session #18: The Brine Banshee

This session included Kanger, Hobbes, Levin, Eremander, and Pirate Captain Pirate. After learning from Fitch about the ring, the party quickly introduced themselves to Levin and sailed off to find "Milksop" Morton. They succeeded in doing so where Morton immediately tried to rob them but failed after being borderline turned into swiss cheese by Pirate Captain Pirate, who killed him instantly. After dealing with the constructs that were also on board, including the ship's figurehead that sprung to life, they looted Morton and the ship, retrieving the Ring of the Iron Skull. They returned it to Fitch who asked to join them on their ship to look for the Brine Banshee. Using the ring to track the ship, they found the shipwreck a few hours away from Ollo. Leaving Rotgut, Hobbes' familiar, and Fitch behind, the party drank their water breathing potions and dived in. Not long after swimming in, they were attacked by a merfolk druid and a small pack of sharks. They were quickly defeated and the party pressed on to search the ship. Collecting large amounts of treasure, they discovered that the ship was split in two, with the other half falling into a deep rift below the ocean. Thus, the party swam further down, taking occasional damage from the pressure and low temperatures. Similar to when they dove down, they were attacked by a charda who spewed its freezing, black bile upon the party, but he was also quickly killed. Continuing the search, the party found the dead body of the captain lying by a magical wheel. Levin tampered with the captain which resulted in him being cursed but retrieved the captain's ring of force shield. The party also retrieved the wheel, discovering this was the item behind the Brine Banshee's speed. Not finding a lot of coins to give to Fitch, the party continued exploring the ship to find more treasure, which resulted in them encountering a massive sea anemone. Since it was unable to move, they swam around it as they explored, and ignored the confrontation. Swimming farther in, the party was assaulted with a large number of illusions out of nowhere. It began with an illusion of a huge shark but after it was disbelieved by the party, it vanished and an illusion of an aboleth appeared. The creature behind this also began to dominate Eremander and Kanger, as it saw how powerful they were. He forced Eremander to attack Kanger and forced Kanger to attack Pirate Captain Pirate. After this illusion was removed, the true aboleth revealed himself to attack the party. The true threat was Eremander and Kanger who almost killed Pirate Captain Pirate, but after a fortunate series of low concentration checks on the aboleth thanks to Hobbes attacking him, the domination ended and Eremander saved Pirate Captain Pirate. In a furious rage, Kanger cut the aboleth down in only a couple of attacks, ending the potential total party kill. After this aboleth was dead, the party knew they had to escape, so they quickly skimmed through the remaining parts of the ship, finding the coins they needed for Fitch, returned to their ship, payed Fitch, and dropped him off at Ollo. The session ended with the party returning to Port Peril for final preparations for the Free Captains Regatta.

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Session #17: The Original Falls

This session included Kanger, Hobbes, Eremander, and Manumit. After pushing farther into the Jasperleaf Apothecary, the party fought a dusk kamadan known as Shimerae. Eventually finding Zarskia, a battle began between her and the party. The party struggled to fight Zarskia as she had greater invisibility on her and she threw constant bombs at them. Manumit fell quickly and could not be saved fast enough and passed away, burning to death from the blast radius. Kanger killed Zarskia and the party began to mourn the loss of Manumit. They looted his body, looted Zarskia, and found the evidence necessary to bring forth to Tessa. The party fled the apothecary and buried Manumit, giving their final blessings before going on, not yet telling the crew what happened to him. After sleeping a difficult rest, the party then went on a massive shopping spree and returned to Tessa with the evidence of the spies. She was very thankful of their work and the PCs even joined their fleet. With their payment, Tessa recommended them joining the Free Captains Regatta, in which they agreed. Tessa had a guest in her home when they visited. An Aasimar bard named Levin. With his ship previously destroyed, Levin joined the party to become a new addition to their crew. With 2 weeks of preparation, the party decided to investigate the Brine Banshee to discover if it has possible upgrades for the Jenny.   Now, with Levin being a new party member and only 3 remaining Wormwood PCs: Pirate Captain Pirate, Scrinti, and Hobbes, the threat of Harrigan amongst the PCs is seemingly less important.

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Session #16: Further Investigation

This session included Hobbes, Pirate Captain Pirate, Manumit, and Eremander. After having looted the wrecker's base, the party returned to the House of Stolen Kisses to bring back the Golden Vespal. To return the favor, Dindreann told them of Jaymiss Keft, a scrimshaw maker in Drenchport who knows some information on the spies. They then made their way to Drenchport to meet Jaymiss, convinced him to tell them of the spies, where he told them about Haddon Pike. Haddon was involved in the smuggling business but recently vanished. The party made their way to Haddon's home where they discovered he was murdered and found strange sheet music and a piece of driftwood resembling a tengu. They showed this to Jaymiss and he revealed the tengu wood is similar to one of Haddon's shipmates, Corlan. He told them of his location in Hell Harbor and they searched for him. Upon meeting Corlan, he was quickly killed by a mysterious assassin known as Giles Halmis. The party chased after Giles and killed him to discover he was hired by a strange person in an apothecary in Port Peril known as "Z." Thus the party went to Port Peril to find the apothecary and learned of Zarskia Galembar, owner of the Jasperleaf Apothecary who opened up trade of poisons and contraband. They also learned of a secret message to get inside. They made their way to the apothecary, gave the guards the password, and were let inside. When they were let inside, they were brought into a private room and met Zarskia where she revealed to had hired Giles and ordered him to kill Haddon and Corlan. She fled after the reveal where her guards attack. They dispatched them quickly and began making their way through the apothecary and found more guards. After killing them as well, the session ended.

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Session #15: A Spy in the Shackles

This session included Kanger, Manumit, Hobbes, Pirate Captain Pirate, and Eremander. After proving themselves to Tsadok and preparing themselves for Kerdak's celebration, the party headed to Fort Hazard. They participated in the celebration, eavesdropping and learning of the Free Captains Regatta and 3 pirates quickly gaining infamy through the Shackles. Kerdak demanded a story from the party to prove themselves to him. Hobbes told the story of their journey into Mancatcher Cove but during the story they were constantly being heckled and interrupted by 3 rude pirates but were quieted through intimidation. Their story was approved by Kerdak and they were granted their letter of marque and became free captains. Shortly after the celebration, they were invited to dinner the following day by Tessa Fairwind at her townhouse. The next day they arrived and introduced themselves to Tessa where she questioned their knowledge on Shackles politics. Their knowledge was little but Tessa informed them of the potential invasion from Cheliax upon the Shackles. Tessa also believed there are Chelish spies within the Shackles and requested the party to find evidence of spies so she may bring the evidence to the pirate council. The PCs accepted and Tessa granted them her Charts of the Fair Winds and told them of two potential locations to investigate, The House of Stolen Kisses in Quent and The Temple of the Hidden Name in Beachcomber. They went to Quent first and met Dindreann, high priestess of Calistria. She promised she would grant them information on spies if they retrieved the Golden Vespal, a golden wasp statue that is very important to them that was stolen by ship wreckers. After this they went to Beachcomber and met a halfling priest of Norgorber where he promised information as well if they find the wreck of the Brine Banshee and discover why it was one of the fastest ships in the Shackles. The halfling also revealed the wrecker's leader as Vakarla, a half orc wizard who hides out southeast of the Rampore Isles. The party went to search for the wreckers and ran into an illusory terrain which covered up a reef, causing The Jenny to run aground. As it ran aground, the wreckers climbed onto their ship and attacked along with Vakarla. She was killed by Eremander and she, her wreckers, and their base was looted. Manumit took her spellbook and they retrieved the Golden Vespal. This is where the session ended.

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Session #14: The Tests

This session included Kanger, Hobbes, and Pirate Captain Pirate. With the party lacking the infamy needed to gather the attention of the Hurricane King, the race began to gather the rest of it. Over time via infamy checks and attacking ships, the party earned 20 infamy. After this new threshold, the party sailed to Port Peril and learned they would need to bribe the Hurricane King in order to gain his attention. The following day, Tsadok Goldtooth, the Hurricane King's first mate and a large group of cronies rudely arrived, insulting the party for their pathetic ship and low chances of passing the tests needed for the Hurricane King's attention. The first test was a competition between Pirate Captain Pirate and Haines Boyne to climb up the rigging of The Stingray, climb the mast, and unfurl the sails. During this time, Pirate Captain Pirate was sabotaged and fell all the way down but made a quick recovery and ended up winning. The second test involved a game of Bastard's Fool, a card game similar to Blackjack. Tsadok faced off Kanger and with each win of a hand, the competitor would have to drink a shot of Gutburn Rum. Eventually, Kanger won the game, keeping his earnings. The third and final test was a test of combat. On the upper deck of the Jenny, the party had to face off against a Marsh Giant known as Fishpork. They easily defeated him, proving to Tsadok they were worthy, despite his constant scowling and insults. The following evening they received a letter of marque from the Hurricane King himself, inviting them to a feast on Fort Hazard, his own personal fortress. The session ended with the party preparing for the feast.

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Session #13: Building a Reputation

This session included Pirate Captain Pirate, Hobbes, Manumit, and Kanger. This also began Book 3 of Skulls and Shackles. After retrieving the treasure of Cyrus Wolfe, the group headed back to Rickety Squibs to attach their new ram onto the Jenny and apply wooden plating. During this time the group went on a shopping spree, selling many of their treasure and purchasing new items. After reconstruction was finished, they set off to build up more infamy to become free captains of the shackles. They sailed around to multiple locations including Port Peril and Crown's End, attempting to make infamy checks and failing to do so. They managed to engage in a few ship battles between some slavers and revolted slaves, which helped gain infamy. The group returned to Crown's End, questioning what they should do next. Kanger set out on finding love, one of his original goals. Through use of persuasion, Kanger managed to court a young woman and completed his long desired goal. This is where the session ended.

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Session #12: The Lost Treasure

This session included Hobbes, Kanger, Scrinti, and Pirate Captain Pirate (being played by me). This session also marked the final session of Book 2. It began with the party leaving Tidewater Rock and Kanger being introduced to Pirate Captain Pirate and Manumit. With Sandara's help, the party managed to find the location of Mancatcher Cove. Upon arrival, the party spotted the Thresher, the same ship that raided Tidewater Rock, but they decided to leave it be as the ship did not attack them. The party also spotted a canopy creeper lurking above the cove, but it did not attack them as well. Manumit decided to stay on the ship just in case one of these 2 potential enemies were to attack. After spotting sahuagin riding sharks and a lucky acrobatics check, Scrinti jumped on top of a sahuagin and began to attack, with the rest of the party following after. Thanks to potions of water breathing, the party was able to safely dive underwater and explore the cove. They dove 160 ft below and spotted a large swarm of jellyfish blocking an entranceway. Hobbes spotted a conch shell horn and blew into it, alarming a few sahuagin and a tojanida. They defeated the beasts and swam into the underwater dungeon. The party pushed through many sahuagin and hammerhead sharks and found themselves at a secret door where Hobbes was drawn towards. The secret room was revealed to have an ancient mariner who still lived and attacked the party. He was killed and Kanger took his cursed deep platinum necklace. After pushing through more sahuagin, they came across the hatchery being guarded by a large sahuagin matron. She was quickly disposed of and the party ignored the tadpoles. Hobbes came across a ring of animal friendship and put it to good use by charming a hammerhead shark that the party decided to name Clarence. As the party delved deeper into the cave, they defeated the "alpha" hammerhead shark and entered the chambers of Krelloort. Krelloort was heavily armored, wielded a powerful trident, and had four arms. He and his concubines attacked the party but Krelloort was frozen in place from Hobbes' hold person spell. This gave Kanger and Scrinti the opportunity to quickly defeat Krelloort. His trident was given to Kanger and the secret passageway to the treasure room was discovered. Thousands upon thousands of gold pieces in valuables lied in this room along with a treasure chest that was classified as a type IV bag of holding, and a new ram for the ship. The party exited the dungeon and shortly celebrated this victory as the Thresher attacked. The new captain, Knuckles Grype was enraged by the party's success and charged in to attack. The canopy creeper was awoken and joined the fray as well, grabbing and consuming a few enemy pirates and almost grabbed Scrinti. It stopped fighting after it received its meal and Knuckles gave up, begging for mercy. Despite Hobbes' command to spare him, Kanger killed him anyway, changing his alignment to neutral evil. Sandara ran up to the deck to tell the party of her pilgrimage to Besmara. She requested to take the Thresher and its crew to help her complete the pilgrimage. Hobbes agreed to her request and Sandara said her goodbyes to the party and sailed off. The session ended with the party deciding to sail to Rickety Squibs to attach their new ram and to celebrate their victory with plenty of alcohol.

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Session #11: Cracking the Rock

This session included Hobbes, Scrinti, Eremander, and the new party member, Kanger. The session began with Pirate Captain Pirate being revoked as captain. He scolded the party and marched to his quarters where he proceeded to get drunk. Hobbes was elected the new captain of the ship, now referred to as Captain Hobbes. The group decided to sail to Tidewater Rock where they were met with Lady Agasta Smythee, Royster McCleagh, and his foster son, Kanger McCleagh. Manumit stayed on the ship with Pirate Captain Pirate to make sure he didn't do anything stupid. After negotiations and dinner with the Lady, she allowed the party to use Tidewater Rock as a base of operations, thus "cracking" the rock. Not too long after that, a servant by the name of Mardus Siggs sustained a gruesome wound to the leg and was discovered by Hobbes where he healed his wounds. After the healing process, Kanger and Hobbes were ambushed by a group of sahuagin. They defeated the group and continued improving relationships on Tidewater Rock. The following day at 2 AM, a horde of pirates led by Isabella "Inkskin" Locke invaded Tidewater Rock and attacked the PCs. Isabella snuck from the roof to the bottom floor via fly and invisibility, summoning a lion to guard her path. She attacked the PCs by magic missiles, lightning bolts, and with her sword, Brine's Sting. She was killed by Eremander and through an investigation of her many tattoos, they discovered a map leading to the lost treasure of Cyrus Wolfe in Mancatcher Cove. There was also a riddle on the tattoo which was partially deciphered. The session ended with Kanger joining the PCs and the party sailing off to Mancatcher Cove.

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