The Crafters of Lon

Stone Giants Be Rockin'
Schoolin' Old Stone Style

Tracking down the Stone Giants wasn’t very difficult, but it later turned out The Grey Hand had just wiped out a few construction workers and that the rest of the clan was on its way to avenge them.

After clapping eyes on the construction workers, there was some discussion of using Arcane Gate and diplomacy, and the latter was attempted, but to no avail.

The battle was long and spread out, with lots of running around, but in the end, of course, there was only dust.


Saug's Tower Stronghold
My, what a well defended tower you've got there.

After defeating the errant monsters, The Grey Hand trudged towards Saug and after a few hours came upon the gates leading into Saug. The guards were quite rude (though that’s par for the course) but quickly backpedaled when they found out who they were dealing with. All of their attempts at civility and courteousness were met with thinly veiled contempt and scorn and not a little desire for violence.

The head guard gave stern orders to a novice guardsman to escort The Grey Hand to the Tower Stronghold, which lay in the center of Saug. The young guard was obviously inexperienced, but his fresh, eager-to-please face was untainted by the oppressive Saugian regime, the organization in which he enlisted to uphold, and that in the long run, would eventually break his spirit and turn him as bitter and callous as the rest of his fellow guards.

It was probably what drew Inadia to him. With minimal effort on her part, she was able to coax the guard to allow them to make a quick stop by Rothern’s dwelling on the way to the Tower. Once there, they stumbled upon Rothern taking a shower. The shower water was disgusting already, though there was no way of telling if it had started out grey, if the soap had caused it, or if Rothern was just really really dirty (which he undoubtedly was after spending some time encased inside the meat blob). After the embarrassing encounter, Rothern was unable to produce any useful secret maps, but provided a lovely and detailed pencil sketch of Saug. The Grey Hand promised to take good care of it and return it when they had no more need of it.

When they finally reached the Tower, they were led into a poorly lit “waiting” room by guards who were trying to be accommodating, but only knew a life of surliness. There was no love lost between The Grey Hand and any of the Saugian guards.

Fire, one of the Genasi Builders, soon appeared and flew into a fiery rage at the way his guests were being treated, though it seemed like he was more putting on a show because he read somewhere that was how he should act, than because of any actual indignation. He then led them up to the top of the Tower to show them the glory that was Saug. After talking for a while, he suggested that they might like to take a guided tour of the Tower and gave them two barely competent guardsmen who were liars to take them around while a dinner “feast” was prepared.

The first stop, of course, was the dungeon. The place where The Grey Hand was the most familiar with and was able to use to judge the quality of the overall building in an instant. It was packed with inmates, mostly petty crimes. The dungeon turned out to be the only place of note that they visited because the guards staunchly refused to show them where the airships were kept (probably a good choice in retrospect…a test flight would certainly have had to been made), even under the not-so-subtle threat of blackmail and less than satisfactory tour guide score. Which Vealkarion happily fulfilled once he saw Fire again.

Dinner with the Builders was a slightly awkward affair but was made tolerable thanks to some Everlasting Provisions. The Grey Hand stayed in the Tower for the night, in the “guest” rooms.

In the morning, they set out on their first assignment, which was to garner them some Rasium.


The Demon & His (very Large) Little Pet
And there was blood & gore...lots of it.

The marketplace was in an uproar because just moments before, several travelers witnessed a gross deformity snatch and devour one of their own and then disappear into the forest.

The Grey Hand looked at one another and felt right at home. They plunged into the forest and quickly identified the monsters as a demon and a large meat blob. After only a few efficient rounds of heavy damage, some blood skidding and an errant Color Spray, both monsters were but a distant blood-lust fueled memory.

The large meat blob had apparently been around for some time because scattered amidst its “body” was all manner of treasure. Vealkarion and the Dwarf got down and dirty and began the arduous task of collecting their well earned booty. Unfortunately, the Saugian guards got wind of the treasure and arrogantly demanded that it be turned over to them. Tensions were high, but in the end, Ctharyan and Vygcarraash convinced the guards to let them bring it up with the rest of the Genasi and get their say.

Meanwhile, back in the bloody forest, the citizens of Lon joined in on the booty gathering, and the treasure was accumulated in no time at all. One of the most interesting treasures found was a survivor from the meat blob, a Githyanki cartographer by the name of Rothern. He was a man of delicate sensibilities and knew the worth of a good, hot, cleansing bath. When he heard that we were in need of a good sturdy map, he delightedly gave us the best map he had off his back. The Grey Hand promised to visit him in his Saugian dwelling, relieved that they had made a kindhearted friend in what appeared to be a bleak, militarian, and unfeeling city.


Genasi Pow Wow
Stone Chairs? What is this, Narnia?

After a restful night in Turiri’s inn and some delicious Dalelands fare to break their fast, The Grey Hand was notified by the Eladrin guards that the Crafters were about to set off for the Tower of Broon for the weekly Genasi meeting. The Grey Hand decided to walk with them and took the opportunity to continue to be nosy Outsiders and get a better feel for the temperament and motivations of the Crafters.

When they arrived at the Tower of Broon and the marketplace, they saw Tiggs again and chatted briefly with the good-natured fellow. They also decided to interview a Saug resident, a farming implement seller by the name of Torith. His story was similar to Tiggs, just with a Saugian viewpoint.

The Genasi meeting was attended by all of the Genasi in Lon except for Wind (A.K.A. Rakas).

After the meeting was over, there was a disturbance in the marketplace and The Grey Hand rushed to see what was the matter.


Ctharyan's Journal. Entry 1

Extended rests. How droll and boring. While I must admit some level of admiration of my comrades, I cannot bring myself to drift into unconsciousness as they do. It has been nearly 50 years since I last entered the realm of dreams, and the visions were enough to keep me from its hazy shores. As luck would have it, my ancestors foresaw this problem, and were wise enough to develop a more efficient form of respite. Unfortunately, my comrades still require, as Vealkarion puts it, “a visit from the sandman.” That phrase always struck me oddly. What manner of imbecile allows a spirit to pour sand into their eyes? I digress.

To better pass the time, and to distract me from the repulsive sounds of a sleeping Dwarf, I have decided to take up writing this journal. Perhaps I may find it amusing at a later date, or lead a kind soul to my decaying corpse. Either one is likely.

In my short time as a member of The Grey Hand, as we have come to call ourselves, we have had ups and downs, to say the least. Over this period of time I have become familiar with the weight, feel, taste, and smell of a Platinum piece where before I had barely known the sight of a few silver. I have also become familiar with the taste and viscosity of my own blood. On some days we are champions, and on others, we are humbled.

Today we were humbled. When I first set boots in Sigil, I felt like a complete stranger. Lon fills me with this same sense of unfamiliarity. Not more than an hour after our arrival did we lose Inadia. This Airship Captain is quite puzzling. A brash and playful youth. The poor child is probably just bored, and now that his father is gone, he has nobody to reprimand him for hitting too hard. We must meet with him. The Genasi here are set in their ways. I doubt there a way to convince either the earthlovers or the industrialites to compromise. At best we may establish a truce that will hold at least until we depart, at worst our presence may trigger all out war. The Windsoul may be our best chance of obtaining a pound of this Rasium substance.

Tomorrow we go to a meeting between the two cities. The Curators, as the earthlovers call themselves, tried to lock us into supporting them at the meeting. How foolish. Our presence alone will be enough to agitate the Builders. They will see it as evidence that there IS more Rasium out there. IF we arrive and strongly endorse the conservationists, it will surely spark tensions. I think the best thing to do is to have both sides make their case, come to some sort of agreement, and then find a way to get our hands on Rasium.

As for our eventual escape, I will need more information before I am comfortable with anyone coming back to Sigil with us. Lon may not have any exits, but Sigil is a far more dangerous cage. Altruistic concerns aside, I worry that telling anyone cooped up in this tiny demiplane we have a way out may end in blood. - Ctharyan

Damn Pirates...
Inaugural Use of Arcane Gate

So the Grey Hand is tromping along the bridge, which was sturdy, though a bit heave-inducing with the abyss below, when they are set upon by airship pirates. The pirates quickly and efficiently capture the entire party with some nasty acid ropes, effectively sealing them in a little bridge cocoon and giving them only minutes to decide their fate. Which was basically, hand over all of your gold or plunge to your deaths.

Naturally, you don’t get to lvl 13 in life without watching your back and doing lots of insight checks, so the party was wary of any sort of promise of safety. After a few moments of panic and life-flashing-before-my-eyes, Inadia remembered that she recently acquired Arcane Gate, which was perfect for the bit of trouble they seemed to be in. In the ensuing ruckus, a plan was hastily hashed out. Unfortunately, with the wind of the airship close by and the ability to communicate hindered, bits and pieces of the more or less well-laid plans were snatched away on the wind. As soon as Inadia stepped into the Gate and out onto the ship, the pilot of the airship sensed that plans had gone awry and kicked the airship into gear and out of harm’s way…or so he thought.

Meanwhile, the rest of the party was shocked at the turn of events, but quickly pulled themselves together. Vealkarion used his handy dandy Exodus Knife to create a room of safety from the imminent plunge into the abyss, while Ctharyan teleported to safety. The airship was pretty far away, but Vealkarion was still able to nearly kill one of the gunmen before they were out of range.

Back on the ship, chaos, fire, and blood ensue with Inadia bravely trying to take down as many of the pirates as possible. Alas, her barely armored and small stature was no match for the odds and she tumbled off the side of the airship.

- RoughDreamer

Getting into Lon
Portal In

The Freeboots “club” that The Grey Hand is a member of sends them to a scholar who wants to port them over to Lon for some rare metal and some Columbus-ing. They decide the reward is worth the risk (and they’re bored anyway) so they decide to help the guy out. A lovely chest is procured from the Freeboots bank, a nice secure, convenient spot, for 100 gp per year and they put some stuff inside, most notably the return portal scroll that will get them out of Lon.

The actual portal-ing was pretty uneventful, flashy, pretty typical fare. Lon was apparently made up of lots of floaty islands, connected by worm-like chain bridges.

The Grey Hand decide to head to the left side of the main island of Lon, where it appeared to be mountainous and desert-y.

Unfortunately, they’re not even half way across when they are beset by airship pirates.

- RoughDreamer


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