Adventure: Whispers of the Vampire’s Blade
Session: 2006-12-02, 2007-01-05
Player: Dave Zhang
PC: Xame
Status: Rogue 1 / Cleric 3

Part I: An audition and a chase scene

Some time after the journey to Whitehearth, after I tapped into the second tier of the Traveler’s gifts, we gathered again at an inn. Actually, I wanted called us together to discuss the possibility of returning to Whitehearth to retrieve Tuiluilan’s body (plus some magic items). Didn’t get to talk about that though, because a House Orien courier arrived with a message for an offer of employment. We traveled to meet our prospective employer, who demanded a test of our abilities to capture—not kill. We subdued the dire ape he set on us with relative ease, and gained his acknowledgment of our abilities, which lead to an offer of 2500 gp each for the successful capture of Lucan Stellos plus a magic blade he had stolen. Lucan had a head start of about 8 hours over us, so we had to make haste.

Now, what does the Paladin Vailith do but decide to chicken out. And what’s more, he absconded with the party’s most expensive item, a ring of protection +2. One would think that someone who proclaims himself a servant of goodness would have the grace to return the item on loan to him from the party that he’s certainly not earned, but I’ve come to expect these sorts of behavior by now. If time wasn’t so tight for our new mission, I’d make sure to retrieve the ring from him… along with his finger on which it’s resting. Ah, more chores lined up for if I ever have any spare time between employment.

Big bird Mike also didn’t show up at the appointed gathering location; this was somewhat unexpected, since we had adventured for a while together and I came to expect better of him. Later, in Zilargo, we’d meet up with him again, where he told us he had been trying to convince Vailith to reconsider.

Oh, another digression. I’ve recently taken to using a queer device, the so-called lasso. G suggested it in my dreams. It’s an ingenious contraption that renders those snared by it with near helplessness, and requires no great physical exertion on my part. And the best part is that it’s cheap, a mere gold piece each.

The remaining four of us headed out on magebred horses provided by our employer, with me double-saddling with Anson. We made incredibly good time, thanks to a few druid spells, and quickly caught up with Lucan and his sister, fleeing on a carriage. The sister singed us somewhat with her arcane spells, but Anson was able to entangle their horses. After that, I’m not quite sure what happened, but my best guess is that they both turned invisible and fled on foot.

Looking inside the carriage though, we saw something… odd. A coffin, evidently recently used as a bed. This did not bode well. I remember bedtime horror stories from my childhood, where vampires feasted on the blood of mortals during the night. I had thought they were fiction, but then again, until recently, I had thought gods were fiction as well. I know not what powers or weaknesses they possess, but holy symbols seemed like a good bet. At the next town, I bought a holy symbol for each of my companions (Sovereign Host ones… G is not so petty as to prevent me from disguising my allegiances, and my companions aren’t really cut out to be recruited anyway).

We headed to the city of Trolanport, where we expected Lucan to be heading, and followed up on a clue.. “krell.” After asking around some, I found out that there was a diplomat with that name, who would be holding a masquerade ball in ten days. Since we continued on our frenzied pace, I suspected we arrived before Lucan, if Krell was his objective, so we attempted to lay an ambush for him. Three days of futile waiting made me revise my opinion of our relative arrival times. I suppose all that’s left for us to do is infiltrate the ball and ambush Lucan there.

Oh, another infuriating turn of events. Some gnome managed to pick from me. ME! He did not succeed on his first try, and I lassoed him as he tried to take off, but then Mike hit my hands and made me drop the lasso! He had no good explanation for why he did so, and as I quarreled with the thus-far relatively sane monk, the gnome managed to make off with some of my gold.

That’s where things stand now, as I actively try to converge on the little sucker who lifted from me. Rationally, I know this is quite silly, since the pecuniary loss is trivial, but I could never live it down if word were to spread. I wonder too about Mike. First, he shows up a week late, and then he acts irrationally and uncharacteristically. Another story of vampires describe them as able to dominate the wills of others as well as changing forms at will. Perhaps we have already been infiltrated? I will need to keep my distance from the birdman.

Player’s Notes:

Wait, disarming your party members is lawful how? Especially when Xame’s using a non-lethal weapon? Xame may “accidentally” toss the lasso over Mike next time, or perhaps mis-incant a cure moderate wounds spell into a inflict moderate wounds spell…

OK, probably not the latter. But the former is a definite possibility.