Session 1 - A King and a Barrow Deep
The session started with the players on a boat from Aulica to Lloedain, a journey of two days. In that short space of time, Utger, Hermigarius and Thrywan became acquianted and decided that their talents matched up quite well for the exploration of Lloedain (which Utger believes it is his destiny to rule and views it less as "exploration" and more "pre-emptive king's rounds").
Once at the docks at Kernow, they were greeted by the local steward who informed them that the king (who would barely be considered a baron upon the mainland) had a task for them if they would follow him. He provided fresh horses and so the journey only took around two hours. When they travelled through the village outside the castle, they noticed that the people looked half-starved and it was more of an extended slum than a true village. The same could be said of the build up of houses inside the castle.
Finally, they reached the keep itself, where a large, joyous and rotund man waited upon a throne for them. He announced himself as King Guotodin. He informs the adventurers that there is an infestation of redcaps (knee high man-shaped creatures with red bulbous hat-like mushrooms on their heads) out to the east but that isn't the problem. The problem is that Picts have been seen out that way and he wants them to go to the nearby barrowmound to make sure it hasn't been disturbed.
The King orders the adventurers to be served well and a huge table is dragged out and laden with food, which the group immediately ignores to go hunting through town to find
spearcatchers hirelings to assist them. Utger comes across a group of four men and manages to hire three of them to join him with the coin left in his purse.
Once the group returns to the throne room, they find King Guotodin asleep and drooling and the steward watches angrily as the group and their hirelings proceeds to devour and / or hide away most of the food upon the table.
They are woken in the morning by the steward with food, who tells them that there is a farmer waiting to guide them to the mound. The group's two days of travel passes uneventfully and they see the barrowmound in the distance. The farmer asks for payment but the group, newly poor, has nothing to offer but rations which the farmer spits at them for before storming off back towards Kernow. (Utger sighs, hoping that wont come back to...bite them)
They discover that the rock in front of the barrow has been moved and the way in, whilst dark, is open. They proceed into the chamber beyond and discover a hallway with five exits, four of which lead to chambers with clay sculptures of corpses. One of the sculptures has a silver ring on a finger which Thrywan breaks off, crumbling the sculpture and releasing a blast of toxic gas. (Hermigarius Lugecianus: "That's unpleasant...") Luckily, due to his years of experience in dirty situations, he resists the poisonous fumes.
The group discovers a gold amulet in the remains of the sculpture but resist the adventuring urge to go smash the rest of them.
They proceed to the end of the hallway where there is a stone door with holes in for handles. After a bit of searching, Thrywan discovers that the door is linked to a trap overhead, seemingly when it is opened. He does not, however, manage to disarm the trap, leading to other methods.
Utger and one of his hirelings take a side of the door each, pressing a hand into a gap and slamming themselves against the wall. A huge stone hammer comes flying from the ceiling and smashes the door into pieces, opening the way beyond.
The next room is a larger chamber with three skeletons (one in a gold crown, the other two with silver amulets around their necks) stood up in alcoves in the wall across from them.
Hermigarius starts chanting benedictions, praying for the sun to protect them from evil in this dark and forbidden abode. Utger approaches the skeletons and, once he gets close enough, all three of them tremble to life. Hermigarius' benedictions fail, as his ceremony or his faith wavers. Utger and Hermigarius are both flat footed but the hirelings Utger hired in town come in to save the day, striking down two of the skeletons.
In the battle, one of the hirelings got hit hard and fell to the ground. As they check his wounds, they discover that the skeleton who hit him managed to smash his face into a pulpy mess, leaving him unable to do anything except burble through blood. As Hermigarius tries to rally his spirit, Utger gives him a warrior's farewell with a sword into his heart.
And that is where the session ended! It was a short one due to the players being new to the system, me getting back to being used to the system and the like. The hireling, unfortunately, rolled a 1 on his HP roll and was hit for a total of 6 damage. Unfortunate for him for sure but that's what
spearcatchers hirelings are for!