Game Summary For August 23rd

The “Free Sons of Nerath” have been living the life of regular garrison duty while in Winterhaven. The small village has reached the size of a town due to refugees fleeing the Troll Wars to the south. Surrounding the dragonimagevillage walls thatch roofed homes have sprung up and an outer earth and wood palisade acts as an outer barrier to protect against raids from Orcs, Ogres and Goblins coming from the Cairngorm Mountains or from the Stonemarch beyond that. Luckily the Orcs haven’t entered the Nentir Vale in the numbers that once decimated the Vale since the day the a dragon moved into the mountain and effectively stopped their pillaging in large numbers around one hundred years ago. The dragon is still rumored to be sleeping in the mountain resting on a pile of treasure or at least that is how the story goes.

muleWhile on garrison duty the company has been assisting in building the palisade, digging ditches and going on patrol for raiding parties. You have even had the chance to find a new recruit. The patrols have taken the company several miles outside of Winterhaven and you all have become familiar with the rangers who patrol the foothills on the Cairngorm Montains and others who live outside of the village proper in their own steadings. The company has also been rewarded with “War Mules” that they can use as mounts or pack animals as they wish. In my setting a War Mule is a Draft Mule (combination of a large horse and donkey) that has been exposed to blood and load noises so that it will not spook in a battle. War Mules are known for strength, endurance and being easy to care for.

You have settled into life in the village. Work has become routine and regular pay and ale are nice. The company lives in an old thatched barn has small rooms partitioned off for each of you and your animals live on the other end. You wake one morning to find that Claw has been murdered in a very odd way. Someone has performed a ritual to cut off his bodies connection to the Raven Queen which has ended his ability to reanimate it. No one crosses the company and lives. After some investigation you find some kobold tracks and follow them back to the foothills but lose them along the way. You send back a message to Lord  Padraig of where you are looking and then head out to see if some of the rangers have any information to lead you in the right direction.

After heading to the nearest ranger outpost you find a young ranger named Will. Will has tells you about some kobolds they have been tracking and the potential site of the lair. The rangers have been tracking them but they haven’t had a chance to call for assistance in clearing out the cave.

So you of course charge off to kill them yourselves. The cave was easy to find you have killed the first two groups in a small grouping of caves. There are a few more caves to go before you believe your revenge is complete but after interrogating a kobold you find that they were hired by a goblin named Iron Tooth who has taken up residence in Shadowfell Keep. When you tried to question him further about the other kobolds he started biting at your ankles, at which time you stomped his head in.



Who is Paul Darr?

Paul Darr has spent 28 years of his life in the Inland Empire region of California, two years in Oregon, two years in Colorado and has recently moved to San Antonio, Texas. Paul is also an US Army Veteran, who has deployed to Iraq and Afghanistan. On the political spectrum Paul is a Libertarian that advocates fiscal responsibility and social tolerance. Paul is currently employed as a Librarian and is a father of one handsome baby boy. In his free time Paul enjoys reading, using and modifying open source software, gaming and several other geeky pursuits.

You can follow Paul on: Google+Facebook and Twitter.

Building a table

I wasn’t quite happy with our old table so I decided to build a new one. I looked around and decided to build a “farmhouse table”.

Step 1. Research.

I looked at over a dozen designs and tutorials from websites like Ana-White.com and YouTube.

Step 2. Draw up a plan.

So I didn’t go with a pre-made plan but bits and pieces of other plans make up what mine ended up being.

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3. Buy the lumber. I went to Lowes for the lumber and had them cut all the lumber. I had the number of pieces and lengths planed ahead to make the task easy. One Newb mistake I made was not realizing that they did not cut 4×4’s. I ended up going over budget by choosing turned legs as replacements but I have to admit they do look better.

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4. I laid all the lumber out in the kitchen to build the table. It’s hot in Texas this time of year. I wasn’t going to hang out in the garage that long. Sarah took Joseph to the zoo and then the mall so that I could have the space to myself.

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I also turned on Patton to have playing in the background. It helped make sure the requisite testosterone level was met in the house. I’ll also note here that those beautiful table legs were a pain in the butt to drill in and place screws. I’m not sure what wood they are but it’s much harder than the white pine I used in the rest of this project. Here are a couple more in progress pictures:

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5. After building the frame of the table I turned it upright and placed the boards for the top on. I just screwed the boards down and made sure to countersink the screws. I then placed wood filler in the holes and let that dry for a few hours.

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6. Later in the evening I painted the legs white and stained the table top. I turned on some fans to help get some air movement to dry out the project.

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Friday night I called about some wood chairs advertised on Craigslist. I ran out to Boerne on Saturday morning to pick them up. I also placed our old dining table on Craigslist and had a buyer by Saturday morning. They stopped by Saturday evening to pick it up. It can be a little weird buying/selling something to a complete stranger on Craigslist. Luckily this is Texas so I was discreetly armed and aware each time and luckily the weapon wasn’t needed. They were really nice each time. I’ve had a few people that seemed pretty sketchy in the past.

Overall I’m pretty happy with how the table turned out. My next big project will be sanding and painting the chairs. We are planning on painting them green to be a bright match to an accent color that is in our downstairs area.



Who is Paul Darr?

Paul Darr has spent 28 years of his life in the Inland Empire region of California, two years in Oregon, two years in Colorado and has recently moved to San Antonio, Texas. Paul is also an US Army Veteran, who has deployed to Iraq and Afghanistan. On the political spectrum Paul is a Libertarian that advocates fiscal responsibility and social tolerance. Paul is currently employed as a Librarian and is a father of one handsome baby boy. In his free time Paul enjoys reading, using and modifying open source software, gaming and several other geeky pursuits.

You can follow Paul on: Google+Facebook and Twitter.

Game Summary: Police Brutality

So I haven’t done a game summary for a while. I figure it’s about time I do one.

So the day started out fine as you walked through the streets of the village of Whitton and came to the gate of the White Lotus Academy. At the gates you were met by Wizard Trevors who greeted you as petitioners and welcomed you to the academy. You could tell he was very insincere in his greeting. He feels petitioners are a waste of his time. Wizard Trevors shows you the dining hall, the privy and your common room. He then departs and says he will come back when the head master is available. The group is suspicious of Trevors and decides to not show the letter from Valthrun the Precient and not tell of their mission for their own safety.

After washing up from the journey the group heads to the dining hall to get a meal and to attempt to chat up some of those eating there. Fred is his normal gregarious self and starts attempting to talk with the students and guards. Shawna shares out some of her Dwarven ale and attempts to chat up the guards. The group tries to find out where the headmaster is so that they may speak to him themselves.

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[What you don’t know.] You were suspicious of Trevors and Trevors was suspicious of you. While you were in the dining hall he was scrying on your location. He saw a bunch of heavily armed people trying to get the guards drunk and find where the headmaster is located.

So Wizard Trevors calls in Captain Harkness (The captain of the guard) and tells him to get absolutely everyone to arrest you. With the recent happenings in the Harkin Barony you could very well be remnants of the Iron Circle here to take the headmaster prisoner. Luckily the Captain has some soldiers (that were on the way to the Troll Wars to the south) present to augment his guards.

[Back to you guys.] So several guards show up and start escorting you away. They are joined by others along the way and once you reach an area that starts looking like a jail you have all had enough. Ket attempts to talk the Captain out of whatever they are going to do but the Captain isn’t in a listening mood. He tells Ket to be quiet and when Ket continues to plead your case Captain Harkness slams his weapon in Ket’s head. The guards came prepared and eventually are successful in capturing all of you. Among the guards is Fargrim. He ran away from Winterhaven a couple years ago and was a friend of Fred Voss.

When you all wake up you are in an infirmary as opposed to cells. One of the physicians tell you that they found the letter from Valthrun on Kitsune. He is a respected wizard and this acts as identification papers for Kitsune. He calls her a full wizard of the highest order and says he has sent her here to speak to the headmaster on his behalf. Sometime during all of this Shawna steals some Iron Arm Bands of power off of one of the physicians. You are told the charges of Assault and Resisting Arrest will be dropped.

At this point Wizard Trevors directs you to the headmasters quarters.

“The Headmaster’s Residence,” he states as he looks at the building. He leads you inside.

The interior’s wood paneling has an old, worn look that bespeaks age. Tevors leads you up a broad stairway to a landing and through the door at the top into a study that feels cramped due to the numerous bookshelves. In the center of the study, an aged man with gray hair sits with his head on his desk, snoring softly. Your guide gives you a small smile that wavers after a couple seconds, then he clears his throat. A few moments later, he steps forward and shakes the headmaster, who sits up with a start and looks at Tevors, then you, with bloodshot eyes and sticky drool on his cheek. Before Tevors can speak, the headmaster sways to his feet and yells, “Tevors!” leaning forward as though to counter the force of his voice. “Leave me! My work is urgent and my time is valuable. Begone, and take these petitioners with you!”

With a small shrug and a warning glance at you, Wizard Tevors ushers you out of the office and closes the door behind him. “I’m, uh, well. There’s a student duel due to begin any time now. I was hoping you would enjoy the demonstration and perhaps share wisdom from your practical experiences. I have some administrative duties to attend to, but I’ll have Fargrim show you the way.”

At Harrid Yard, two combatants square off against each other. Each wears the White Lotus uniform—one in the form of heavy practice armor with a dulled blade, and the other in light practice armor with a wand. Neither is older than 16. The warlock is just getting the upper hand when the practice mannequins go nuts and attack the group. The group springs into action protecting the spectators. The two combatants take a couple shots as they run through and get help.

When that fight finishes, Instructor Obrak (a dwarf) runs up, saying that a student fetched him. Instructor Tevors arrives a moment later.

Tevors is nearly breathless after his run to the practice field. “I’m . . . ” he gasps, “ . . . so incredibly sorry. Nothing like this has ever happened before. The enchantments on those practice dummies have been unchanged for at least 50 years.” Then he doubles over and breathes heavily for a minute while the dwarf that ran up just before him talks with the students.

“I’m going to be examining the records of their maintenance and then I’ll ask Instructor Westbrooke to examine the mannequins directly.” Tevors looks at you. “If you’d like to help me figure out what happened here, you could find me the book in the library that details how they were created originally. I’d send a student, but it’s likely to be in one of the more dangerous parts of the stacks.”

“If I could use your experience and knowledge any other way, I would. But both the maintenance records and the creation instructions are confidential and proprietary, and we can’t allow you to see either without permission from the headmaster who . . . who might not be forthcoming, as you saw. This is something you can do now.”

Tevors gives the group a crystal the size of a finger that, through warmth and chill, will guide them to the correct room in the Lost Secrets Library.

Several of you say, “More dangerous parts of the stacks? I hate this place!”



Who is Paul Darr?

Paul Darr has spent 28 years of his life in the Inland Empire region of California, two years in Oregon, two years in Colorado and has recently moved to San Antonio, Texas. Paul is also an US Army Veteran, who has deployed to Iraq and Afghanistan. On the political spectrum Paul is a Libertarian that advocates fiscal responsibility and social tolerance. Paul is currently employed as a Librarian and is a father of one handsome baby boy. In his free time Paul enjoys reading, using and modifying open source software, gaming and several other geeky pursuits.

You can follow Paul on: Google+Facebook and Twitter.