The tale of the Hopeful Dopes has taken a momentary pause as another adventure needs to be told featuring some new characters, new encounters, and new twists!
Our new story starts with several different strangers going about their regular day when they are each ambushed and taken prisoner by slavers seeking to turn a profit by selling to the highest bidder. The characters are brought onto a ship chained and caged in the hull as they began their long journey to a land and fate unknown, and the newly made slaves prayed to whatever god or powerful being to save them from this terrible situation. It seems someone’s prayer was answered, for after several days of travel, the ship was chaotically tossed around by an icy storm system for several days on end. However, in the midst of an especially bad cyclone, the ship was hurled onto a landmass, and many of the individuals found themselves knocked out by the shipwreck.
After being unconcious for an unknown amount of time, one group of cell mates appeared to come back from the dark at the same time, and one strikingly strong female half-elf, Avery, broke her chains and proceeded to free the others: Gye a female human, Arkon a male goliath, Idris a male half-elf, Judah a male aasimar, Winter a female Tabaxi, and Hugo a male Loxodon. The group immediately found itself fighting the biting cold, and they sought to go above deck to find out more about what happened to them. They were all greeted with a tropical forest along the edge of the beach with their crashed slaver ship, and there was little to no sunlight going through the clouds which added to the piercing cold taking a hold of the party. Though soon after taking in their surroundings, the group noticed an individual drunkenly stumbling around the beach, and they soon recognized this individual as their jailor Halfkris. The male half-elf and goliath immediately grabbed a few improvised weapons and took revenge on their jailor with several strikes, and Idris was able to knock Halfkris with a club blow to the head. The party turned the tides on their ex-jailor by quickly tying him up, and they also found several pieces of armament and information to better survive.
As the group searched the ship, a female barely holding onto life pleaded that the group take her, Melisana, to her merchant guild master father in Velikros. The group to took her in, and Hugo offered to care for her as they decided to set out to find a way off the island. The party set their course into the hills hugging the forest along the southwest side of the island. The icy chill of the weather never let up as the companions made their way through the hills, but a monstrous piercing shout caught the group’s attention. Several members snuck up an adjacent hill side to peer over to find a fierce fight happening between a handful of orcs and several groups of goblins. The more perceptive members of the party also noticed an old man tied up and gagged at the top of an adjacent hill top. The adventurers executed a hastily devised plan to rescue the old man while avoiding the attention of the combatants below. The rescue went off flawlessly, and seeking to avoid these creatures later, the party pushed several boulders down the hill and crushed a majority of the goblins and orcs. The surprise attack caught the remaining creatures off guard, and the party was able to dispatch them with haste.
After the battle had subsided, the party unbound the old man who introduced himself as Keestake, the last remaining member of the dreaded Viladel pirates, and the old man also revealed he was protecting valuable treasure from orc and goblin raiding parties on the island. As thanks for saving him, Keestake offered the party shelter in the temple of the Goddess of healing and light, Falinora, northeast of the hill country. The group traveled into the night time when they finally found a decrepit looking temple at the top of the hill over looking a manor estate. The temple offered a warm respite from the increasingly painful cold, and the shipwrecked survivors and Keestake made camp for the night.
However, in the middle of the night, an undead creature tried to strike the party while their guard was down, but the scavenger-like creature was not a match for our heroes. As the peace of the night returned, another disturbance called out to the Hugo and Avery. The pair found themselves facing an animated statue of the goddess calling to them, and the goddess relayed her intentions to the two. Falinora revealed that the goblins and orcs had desecrated her temple, so she plans to cleanse the island of all living presence with her ice storm after the end of the next day. She further stated that Hugo and Avery had expressed interest in the goddess, so she would lend some of her power in their attempt to escape the island. However, Falinora warned that if they are still on the island at the end of tomorrow, she will stay her wrath no more. The rest of the party awoke to see this animated statue talking to their members, and the statue soon became still once again. Avery and Hugo relayed the message from the goddess, and the party prepared for their expedition down into the pirate estate to hopefully escape the island. Though the group soon realized that Halfkris had snuck away at some point in the night, and who knows if he had heard the goddess’s message.
Will the group be able to find Halfkris before he warns the raiding parties, will the group be able to battle or avoid the raiding parties, and will the party escape to return to their old lives?! Find out more in our next post!