The Heroes of Westfall

The Guardian Brotherhood - Chamber of Unlife
Where the Guardian Brotherhood Were Overwhelmed

Behind Enemy Lines

With four of the five labyrinth coins in hand, the Guardian Brotherhood stepped through the portal at the bottom of the emptied pool, and found themselves surrounded by dozens of undead skeletons made of strange, mismatched bones. The skeletons wasted no time in attacking the heroes, and they found themselves in a fight for their lives.

Ibaka killed the nearest skeleton to him, only to see it returned to the battlefield just a few seconds later in the recreation circle on the other side of the bridge, which was suspended precariously above a dangerous current of electricity. Clearly the circle was the key to this room, but before they could do anything about it, they would need to identify it.

Cherith and Boswell slowly made their way through the room with the protection of the rest of the group, and as they got closer and closer they saw they would need to decipher the runes etched into the floor to learn the power word to turn off the circle. It would be difficult, with the undead constantly respawning in the circle they were trying to deactivate, but they were students of the arcane, they couldn’t fail too badly, could they?

Perhaps it was the stress of combat, or perhaps it was a testament to the complicated algebra required to create the runes, but the wizard and the bard had more than a difficult time deciphering them, and the Guardian Brotherhood quickly found themselves out of healing and in dire need of an escape.

They circled the wagons and headed back across the bridge to the teleportation circle, narrowly escaping the horde of undead, and rested and regrouped. Knowing the layout of the room and the goal at hand, they were able to come up with a sound strategy to deal with the undead and the terrain, and this time Boswell was ready for the magic circle, and was able to deactivate it with no problems.

They located the last of the five coins and looted the room (finding four astral diamonds in the process), and headed back out into the maze. They wandered for another hour before being confronted by a hungry Osyluth, who teleported one too many times and found himself on the wrong end of Pilindor’s bow and Boswell’s staff.

The Guardian Brotherhood - Random Encounters
Where the Labyrinth Almost Won

The Guardian Brotherhood had four of the five coins of Baphomet, and had just finished fighting the psychic sentinel and decided to attempt to take a rest for the first time in the labyrinth. When they woke the next day, they were safe, and continued on their way.

They had a more difficult time navigating the corridors this time, however, and found themselves in two different encounters before making their way to the next chamber.

The first was with the will-o’-wisp from earlier, only it had help this time, in the form of two astral stalkers. While the stalkers acted in tandem, trying to flank and out maneuver the Guardian Brotherhood in the narrow corridors of the maze, the will-o’-wisp instead focused on blinding the heroes.

It was more difficult than expected, and featured another rambling appearance by the rust monster, but the heroes eventually made it past the ambushers and headed back into the maze, where they promptly got lost again.

This time they were attacked by a fire elemental, which dropped from the ceiling to attack them. This encounter was much easier, and the heroes escaped mostly unharmed.

Finally, after wandering for several hours, they came upon a small archway with stairs leading down to a pool room. There were fire pits in the four corners of the room, and suspended above a platform at the center of the pool was a living fireball spell. When they entered the room nothing seemed to happen, so they began searching to see if they could find another coin.

When Sid dipped his toe into the pool, predictably, they were attacked by the room’s guardians – four astral giants and the gargantuan living fireball. While the fireball rolled around the room trying to immolate the heroes, the giants teleported and tried to knock them unconcious with their tree-sized quarterstaves. It was a tough fight, but with each giant that went down, the room got easier and easier, and eventually the heroes won in the end.

After completing the battle, they again searched the room, and found a way to lower the water level, which revealed a teleport circle, presumably to the next room in the maze.

The Guardian Brotherhood - Psychic Assault
Where the Heroes Encountered the Fog of War

Having defeated the undead, the Guardian Brotherhood listened to the other two remaining doors to see if they could discern what was behind them. The first has a small scurrying, a lot like the kruthiks they had defeated in the entryway. Behind the other, they heard large pounding footsteps of some kind. They chose to go for the kruthiks first.

Entering the room was easy, and inside they found what looked to be an old banquet hall, though the food on the table looked as though it had been sitting out for a thousand years. And, there as a nest of extremely angry kruthiks and the kruthik hive lord.

Boswell, Cherith and Pilindor blasted from the doorway as Ibaka and Sid made their way into melee. A well placed fireball from Boswell took care of most of the hatchlings, and the combined efforts took out the adults quickly. The hive lord was more difficult, but for the Guardian Brotherhood, she was no real match.

They searched the room and found another token with a labyrinth pattern on it, and began wondering what these were, and how many there were.

The next room was also easy to get inside, but its contents were far more interesting. The middle of the room was dominated by an enormous cloud-like pillar, which Boswell (and Sid, incidentally) identified as Fog of War, a deadly obstacle. The room was being patrolled by a large psychic sentinel, who was aided by two shardminds. As the sentinel methodically marched around the fog, the shardminds used the portals on either wall for more maneuverability, and eventually the Guardian Brotherhood realized they could also take advantage of the portals.

It was not an easy fight, but the heroes won in the end, and after burning away some of the combustable fog, they found some more gold and another token.

The Guardian Brotherhood - Wandering Rust Monsters
Where Things Were Not As They Seemed

After fighting through the bats in the first room of Baphomet’s Labyrinth, the Guardian Brotherhood pressed on, letting Ibaka lead the way. His keen minotaur senses helped him navigate the conusing corridors fairly efficiently, and they had only one strange encounter before making it to their first series of rooms – after about an hour of searching through the winding corridors and twisting passages, they came upon a will o’ wisp beckoning them to follow.

They attempted to for a few minutes, but when it became clear that they were just going in circles, they left the small fey to itself and continued on through the maze.

After another hour or so of searching, they found a large door. Through it, they could hear scurrying feet, like those of insects, and decided since it was the first real landmark they had found so far, they would open it and see what was inside. What they found was a nest of kruthiks.

The frenzied insects attacked viciously, but a well-placed burning spray by Cherith and a good placement of Sid’s banner defeated them, and the Guardian Brotherhood was free to explore this new series of rooms.

They listened to each of three doors. The first sounded like more insect scurrying. The second was complete silence. The third sounded like huge metal footsteps claking around in the room. The chose to try the silent room first.

When they entered, the room had five statues scattered around its circumference. In the middle of the floor was a series of translucent membranes with the faces of lost souls trapped underneath. They were begging to be released. Sid decided to oblige them, and the trapped undead promptly attacked the adventurers.

The fight didn’t last long, but halfway through a rust monster made an appearance in the room. It seemed to ignore the combat going on and went darting through another hole only a round later, but it was just enough time to make sure the heroes would be watching their backs.

The Guardian Brotherhood - Baphomet's Labyrinth
Where Ibaka and Boswell Figure it Out

Having defeated the patrolling guards outside Bloodsand Arena, the Guardian Brotherhood quickly introduced themselves to Boswell, and then made their way into the stadium’s underbelly. Inside, they found many cages used to hold combatants and other creatures before the fights, where there was a malnourished minotaur huddled in a corner mumbling to himself. They did some first-aid on the captive and he told them that the gnolls had taken many of his people for the fights, and that they were being orchestrated by the lead gnoll Nix, who could not be beaten.

Pilindor and Cherith snuck up to the door to the arena floor and heard the sound of several minotaurs in combat, and the bard was able to corroborate with Boswell that the creatures they were fighting were Dragonspawn – a Firebelcher and a Stormlizard. The party decided not to sit idly by while the innocent minotaurs were forced to fight, and charged into the combat.

They fought the Dragonspawn, while Nix looked on, and just as they were about to win the fight, the large gnoll decided to enter into combat himself. He swung his huge flail at the Brotherhood, doing significant damage with each swing, and the heroes found quickly that he was being protected by some kind of ritual – which Boswell deduced could only be undone by using another ritual. Unable to fight the villain, the Brotherhood fled.

That night, Ibaka was visited by Baphomet in a dream, and told that in order to save the minotaur race, he would have to locate and navigate the labyrinthine temple built in the demon’s honor millenia ago by the earliest minotaurs. The temple was built as a fail-safe in the event that the minotaur people were facing extinction, and only Ibaka was capable of figuring out the maze and unlocking its power within. In addition, he saw a series of five ancient minotaur family sigils, and was given the whereabouts of the temple.

Ibaka lead his companions through the Great Desert to the location of the temple, and they entered. They fought of a large dire bat and its offspring in the entryway, where they were then offered the choice of three doors to go through…

The New Heroes - Underneath Westfall, Part Two
In Which Something Disgusting Attacks the Heroes

Surround It

After fighting through one room of kobolds, the New Heroes rested up in the Mended Drum, and then headed back down for more action. They followed the trail of the kobolds from before and tracked them to another chamber in the sewers, where they were being ordered to search through piles of garbage by a kobold wyrmpriest and his pet – a bluespawn stormlizard.

The fight was long and difficult, but they were able to fend them off. They searched the bodies of the small creatures and found some gold, as well as a holy symbol of Yeenoghu, the god of the gnolls, which seemed quite odd.

After resting up, they started to head for the exit when they were attacked by something more powerful and disgusting than they had fought before. The tentacles attacked first, knocking their warlock friend unconcious, and the other heroes scrambled to fight off this new creature.

A Leechlife Otyugh. It prevented their healing from working properly and weakened their attacks, but after a grueling encounter, they prevailed, and were able to return home, much more dirty and wet than they had expected.

The Guardian Brotherhood - Bloodsand Arena
Where A New Player Arrived


After the fight in Ibaka’s home camp, the Guardian Brotherhood tracked Kassador’s caravan through the Desert to Bloodsand Arena.

There were patrols wandering around the outside of the arena in a circuit, and in order to get inside, the party new they would have to fight through at least three of the patrols. They waited until on of them was at its closest point to their hiding place and attacked them.

Meanwhile, inside the arena’s holding room, the human wizard Boswell was being held captive. He was able to free himself from his bonds and followed the sound of combat outside, where he joined the fight against the gnolls, and got to show off his own abilities to these mysterious newcomers.

The fight didn’t last much longer, and afterward the Guardian Brotherhood introduced themselves to the mage, and he explained his mission to them – he had been sent by the Arcanum to locate an ancient minotaur structure under the Great Desert.

The Guardian Brotherhood - Over the Dunes
Where The Guardian Brotherhood Gave In To Indecisiveness

After the ambush in the desert, the Guardian Brotherhood finished their night of sleep and headed out to Ibaka’s village in the morning.

Tavros led the way, and as they crested a large dune, they found the camp below them. It was still populated, but mostly by gnolls. The only minotaurs to be seen were in the stocks or in shackles, and all seemed quite beaten down. They decided to take the day to watch the village and see what would happen.

The first thing of interest they saw was an enormous gnoll, easily twice as big as they normally get, making his way through the camp taunting the prisoners. He carried a large cat-o-nine-tails and whipped the captives as he walked by.

The next thing they saw was a large caravan stopping at the town. It was escorted by several gnolls, and inside was Ibaka’s uncle, Kassador, unchained and conversing with the gnolls. Like the other gnolls, Kassador had grown almost twice as large as a normal minotaur would be.

After debating how to proceed, the Guardian Brotherhood decided to wait it out overnight and see if the caravan was still around. When they awoke it was not there. They went down to the camp and fought through a few gnolls and some of the cacklefiend hyenas from before, but there were no prisoners to be found.

They set out in the direction the caravans tracks led them, and Ibaka deduced that they were headed toward Bloodsand Arena. They made their way there, and were only briefly sidetracked when they were attacked by a pair of Trihorn Behemoths.

The Guardian Brotherhood - Just Deserts
Where The Hyenas Are No Laughing Matter

The Guardian Brotherhood teleported to Waypoint Ceph on the north edge of the Great Desert.

When they arrived, they found themselves in an old, abandoned military fort. It was abandoned, except for a pack of wild cacklefiend hyenas, which immediately decided the heroes would make for an excellent dinner.

They fought off the corrosive predators, and waited while Cherith’s teleportation took a minute or so longer than everyone else’s. They found an old statue of Kord in one of the rooms, but the others seemed mostly devoid of anything particularly interesting.

So, they headed out across the dunes.

With the minotuars leading the way, and Pilindor assisting when he could, it took them about three full days of long, arduous travel before they camped for their final night. During Bharhash’s watch, they were attacked by a large group of gnolls, and two more of their ill, captive minotaurs.

While some of the gnolls tried to hinder them with nets from range, the others ran straight in for melee. The fight was long and tough, but the Guardian Brotherhood won, and left the minotaurs alive on Tavros’ request. They had enough chain to restrain them, and it was a short enough walk from here to the camp that they should be able to control them for now…

The Guardian Brotherhood - Something Old, Something New
Where Ibaka's Past Comes Back to Taunt Him

After defeating the chain devils and chasing off the imp, the Guardian Brotherhood claimed the chest they found in the bone pillar and headed back to the temple of the Raven Queen to rest and figure out what to do next.

Cherith riddled out how to open the chest, by singing the old nursery rhyme titled The Old Man’s Bargain while simultaneously working in the somatic components while the others slept, and inside found a nice suit of armor and a signet ring with Mephistopheles’s symbol on the sides and the name of Myzos on the top. The next morning, the Marut Rahm told them to complete the mission, they needed to destroy the ring (which was a dimensional anchor to the material plane for the devil Myzos) and Ibaka quickly smashed it with his mordenkrad.

The Marut told them the deed was done and they were allowed to return to Westfall.

Their first stop upon returning (after reuniting with Sid) was to head to Sid’s Salty Seaman, which was being held hostage by a pair of powerful gnolls with a chained up and rabid minotaur who claimed to be looking for Ibaka. The Guardian Brotherhood fought them off, saved the hostages, and left the minotaur alive to get information from him.

It turned out the minotaur’s name was Tavros, and he was from a clan that lived close to Ibaka’s in the Great Desert. He said his camp had been attacked by the gnolls and then he remembered nothing else. Concerned with what was going on at his home, Ibaka asked the rest of his friends to come with him and make sure everything was OK.

They quickly researched a way to teleport to the ancient ruins near his home and decided to bring Tavros along to assist them.


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