Out of Arduin

Clues of Origin I
Why does it always have to be snakeheads?

Three weeks after their run-in with the gigantic monstrosity under the imploded prison, the mage’s guild calls Gore to consult with him about the dark orb which he brought them. It seems that it is an extremely powerful artifact, but they are unable to unlock its higher functions. Currently they have unlocked it to be a 10-point general-use powerstone, and an extra 10 points each for body transformation or movement spells that involve teleportation or portals. In addition, the wielder gets +2 to effective skill for spells of these schools.

However, there is much more potential and while they have been unable to unlock any further functions, they have done a divination which has told them that the answer lies in an ancient metal ruin of which they have received a vision. Showing this vision to Gore lets him know this is in the general region of the city of Natinuka, the northern kingdom of the Orcs. Seeing the scene sparks a memory in Classified and he recalls some beforetimes knowledge, including the ability to navigate to these ruins if he is within sight of the mountains.

Gore tells his companions, and soon they are ready to go. The fastest way there, only a few days, is by Dwarven Tunnel Transport. But it’s underground and, like many, Gore doesn’t trust it. Gore and Classified opt to take the second-fastest option, airship. Zat, Gringle, and Wiley take the tube.

On the ride to Natinuka the airship encounters a large group of beautiful, rainbow-colored flying snakes. The crew shoos Gore and the other passengers belowdecks. When the passengers emerge, the crew all have snakes for heads! No one seems to notice this but Gore, who wakes up screaming in the cargo section of the Dwarven Tunnel Transport, which is only about 1 1/2 days through its 3-day journey. He has just encountered a reality shift from an earlier magical mishap, a world which is exactly the same except there is a prominent race of snake-headed humanoids who are talented shippers. Snake-Head shipping is the most trusted name in air, land, and sea shipping.

After a while in town, Gore tracks down a guide named Shagabag the Scarred who can show them where the ruins are. After a brief exchange, they settle on $100/day and he agrees to meet them back at the Dour Cup tavern when they are ready to go.

In time, the airship arrives and Gore is horrified to learn that it IS crewed by snake-head people! He runs off to drink while Classified unloads himself and notes the mountain range (he identifies them as the Tiryrene Mountains, and the city as built on the ruins of Nautinica, an ancient Elven city. The river Renuvianis runs through it, though all of these names are faded, unused, or bastardized in this age) and that he can navigate them to the ruins. Two guides are better than one, right?

The party goes to the Dour Cup to find Gore drinking himself into a stupor. He is mumbling about snake-heads and Zat points at a group of snake-heads on the other side of the bar. Gore gets an evil grin and begins bringing some fireballs online…. and session end.


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