Iron Gods - Mike Korupp

Vidon in Chesed Part 2
We go about town

We spent some time creating equipment and retraining to use weapons. As we completed the tasks we get word that the Head Priestess of Abadar sends word that she will see us now. Harkness asks her about his previous life and she responds that she remember him. She shares that Ovid had heard of Android Forges and was researching the locations of them. Between the Priestess and Harkness they figure that the nearest one is probably 100 miles away.

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Vidon and Company in Chesed
Will we be able to stay out of trouble in a Technic League city?

After our encounter with some Technic League thugs and the City Watch we were very careful not to go anywhere without someone else along. There was a very real chance of some of us being on Wanted posters. So we never unpacked completely.

Flynn went to a n Armor and got his 2 Adamantine Wakizashi’s, I got a Light Ironwood Quickdraw Shield and sold my large shield. I also picked up a new belt and one of those funny flying stones that is supposed to make my use of the Chainsaw easier to handle. Susie and Mal picked up a few useful items too.

Mal was going to be fairly busy creating some stuff so I went and found a trainer to toughen myself up so maybe I won’t fall sown so often. Flynn trained with his new weapons.

I think the plan for next week is to start looking for the next part of the Music Box and try to get Harkness is to see the High Priest of Abadar.

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On the road again with Vidon
Where will our travels take us?

We left Scrapwall and walked the road toward Chesed. On the second day out we find 4 Hill Giants. I hate Giants so I attacked. It caused us some slight trouble but no one went down. On the third day out Flynn woke up without the ability to talk. It appears that the wound was from earlier in a fight. Mal healed him. A message from the Priestess arrives via a clockwork Hawk.

We arrive in Chesed in the shadier side of town. It appears that there is a Tax Festival going on. We get a note asking us to meet someone in the Lords District. It is recommended to us to stay at the Martyred Mare. We decided to go to the Bar and Grill in the Lord’s District. We see our “Friend” Treet from Torch is talking to an Elf at a table. Treet moves to the bar and Arim and Harkness move to either side of him.

Two agents of the Technic League challenge us to a fight outside. I tell them to go ahead of us. The Half-elf cast a spell that seemed to make me feel slower than normal, but Susie cast her spell and I feel normal. Harkness shoots them and Arim fires his bow while trying to not hurt them.

It turns out that the summons to meet someone here was indeed a trap. We made a mistake in trusting that everyone is honest and straight-forward in their dealings with people. That is evidently not the case when it involves the Technic League. Unbeknownst to us the tavern we were sent to is the local hangout of the League. So when we went outside we were presented with some made up Rules of the Duel. We tried to abide by them but were unable to compete as we were outnumbered and outclassed.

The last thing I recall is hearing a hysteric laughing, and then nothing til I was shaken awake by a City Watchman. We need to tread lightly in this city I see. We will continue with oour mission and keep a very close watch on our surroundings.

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Journal of Shadow Mal 15

Entry 160, Day 39, Evening

Puny god.

We descended further into the metal dungeon, discovering along the way that it was, in fact, a gigantic digging machine which Hellion wished to possess and use as a new body. We were assaulted by Dark Folk, yet another familiar brand of shadow-dwelling humanoid given to murder and stealth. From what I gather they are not actually extra-planar in nature, but they do fear the light and even when walking in total darkness prefer to bundle themselves under multiple layers of filthy clothing. According to Arim they also fear the light, see perfectly in any kind of darkness, and as witnessed, upon death their bodies explosively evaporate into one or another brand of energy. Some burst into blinding light, some shattered into thunderous waves of sound, and rumors tell of other subspecies having even more spectacular death throes, and they seem to bear the mark of Darklands corruption.

But enough ecology, after a dark-folk ambush, Flynn touched one of the many screens that Hellion was using to shout at us and was promptly rendered stupid. The touch of idiocy curse is (fortunately) temporary, but always troublesome, and we were forced to ride herd on him to keep his attentions from wandering away for the rest of the delve.

And his attentions were important, as we were soon faced with yet another horde of Hellion’s fanatics, whipped into a frenzy by the roaring chainsaw of Kulgara. Aside from the obvious threat of an angry warhost and a mad orcish barbarian with a deadly tech-weapon was another ambush by Dark Folk and several hurled explosions, both technological and magical. This chainsaw is a powerful weapon, it’s primary threat is the titual “chain saw-blade” which is exactly what it sounds like. Sharp blades attached to chain links are placed on a gear and crank system which whirls the blades at incredible speed around and around. It achieves slow cutting effect of a saw with the speed of a chopping axe. Quite ingenious, I find myself wondering if I could create a magical construct which would achieve the same effect, perhaps with a circular blade that whirled in place…

But again I digress. The battle was fierce but we were victorious, and after looting and investigating we found the control center of this massive digging machine. Its guards (small insectoid robots) were quickly dispatched and upon the screens of this nerve center was (unsurprisingly) Hellion once again. Arim continued to torture this machine-demon with disinformation and misleading claims. I was quite impressed as this self-styled god was reduced to selling out his own minions in the hopes that we would let him escape “the other team” (which did not exist) that had been sent by Unity and the Technic League (who may not even be aware of each other, let alone working together) that was sent to kill him. Lies are such terrible weapons sometimes. After he told us several useful things in exchange for a liar’s empty promises Susie remembered the Memory Facet she was carrying and decided to attach it to the banks and arrays of incomprehensible (to me, at least) machinery. Hellion barely had time to yelp in horror before he was banished from the screens and, it seems, the entirety of this great village-sized excavator.

Another ambush and battle burned out the last of my wand of healing, it seems I underestimated the amount of damage my allies would be receiving on this trip. We soldiered on and found the last surviving member of Hellions Lords of Rust was not, as I had thought, an alien from the stars. She was instead an alien from the planes, and had been hunting and parasitically breeding in the corpses of people for some time. She was a Xill named Zaagmander, and had apparently chosen to abandon Hellion just as he had abandoned her. She was cursed to be unable to return to her home plane, and offered to assist us if we could assist her. Hellion would otherwise escape, she said, and with our depleted resources we were willing to agree. Lawful outsiders can usually be trusted to stick to a short-term deal, even if they are ultimately a dangerous and deadly evil.

With the assistance of the outsider we were able to quickly find and defeat Hellion’s true form (a mechanical scorpion) and the few robots he still had at his side. Upon defeat his machine body shrank down to the size of the small machines we fought back near Hacklmore. I almost feel bad for the beast, dying in terror and ignorance, with nothing but constructs at his side. But then he chose to stand alone, and his goals had always been to make everyone and everything his puppet.

So ends the puny god, and tomorrow we shall either return Zaagmander to her home plane or my magics will fail and we will probably have to kill her. I still feel moral qualms about agreeing to help her escape her dimensionally-anchoring curse, as it is clear she or her children will return to hunt here anew, but I won’t bust a deal and we needed to make it at the time.

Entry 161, Day 40, Morning

Zaagmander is free to stalk the planes once more and the deal is now completed without betrayal or dishonor. It is my hope I can rectify this transgression later, perhaps set up a bounty on Xill in the Scrapwall area for other adventurers to collect. As it is we did what we had to, whether or not I like it. Hopefully Chesed has a pathfinder lodge, those are always good for placing bounties and getting problems solved with violence.

Speaking of Chesed and future plans. I have been speaking to Mr. Sileet about his combat aspirations. Although I could never hope to teach or train him in the arts of the sword, I know a thing or two about the combat style he seems to have started developing all on his own. His love of twin blades would likely be better served with smaller, lighter weapons than what he is currently wielding, and I recall seeing a kind of short sword that was often used with this style in Tian Xia. If I can find someone with the appropriate expertise in crafting I suspect I can help him find what he is searching for with the sword and axe pair he currently swings. Chesed is where Harkness’ quest leads, and it was a place that Hellion had leads on weapons against the other dread Machine Spirit, Unity.

That reminds me, we need to see if we can still use that Memory fragment. I shall ask Susie.

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Letters Home
Letter 14 (Some good and bad)

Dear Mom and Dad,

So for the latest, and hopefully last update being done in Scrapwall, we ah…well this is kinda hard to write since there is some traces of the touch of stupidity left but. here it goes. As it turns out the last guardian for Hellion was a planes hopper that rapes it’s victums and once this is done its babies explode the victum upon birth. Truth be told, The archer spoke with this creature and did some DAMN good diplomacy because it let us through so we could kill the would-be machine god Hellion before it reached full power. HURRAY!!! Although as soon as the battle was over the last guardian disappeared on us. But at the time i was to exausted to care. But don’t think for a second that i don’t think this will come back to bite us in the ass.

We are staying for a time to finalize and settle the power hold on the city so that we can axcess this city late. But for now we are heading north an OUT OF THIS HELL HOLE!!!. I couldn’t be happier.

Write to you new when i have more happier news.

Your Son
Flynn Sileet

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Devon watches the last Lord of Rust disappear.

Only being one lord left, Zagmander, we head further into the belly of this gigiantic machine. We bicker a bit about whether we should go straight to the remaining lord or make sure nothing jumps us from behind. Thinks have tried that twice so far and I’m no longer interested in a third occurrence. As our fighters are in desperate need of glasses, they rush into the lair of the DarkCreepers and are completely oblivious to their presence until the stabbing begins. Thankfully they are not very tough and we are able to walk out without too much effort. I scout further ahead and see some weird thing sitting in a vat of bubbling stuff. It knows we’re here since we through some exploding DarkCreepers its way eariler, so I suspect it won’t go anywhere on its own initiative. Declaring that side done we head to the other.

The first thing we find is a large collection of bodies who have been killed by alien chest bursters. This looks rather ominous. we get together and try to figure out what could do such a thing. Our conclusion is a Xill and they are important since, their bite paralyzes. Sadly, we have no antitoxin on us, so we’ll just have to take our chances. Further into its lair, we see that all the monitors are broken. It seems to have had a falling out with Hellion. We finally meet it and it is willing to talk to us. We learn it only joined the Lords of Rust in exchange for Meyanda removing a curse from it that placed upon her several years ago. The curse stopped her plane shift ability and left her stranded and in pain. Meyanda was unable to remove the curse and her replacement was pretty incompetent. So Zagmander dummped the Lords of Rust and has been down here killing off any stray followers she comes across. We tell her we are well aware of Meyanda’s lack of magical ability and that we are more pwerful than her. If she helps us we will remove the curse. Secretly talking to each other, we plan on attempting to remove the curse via magical means, but if that fails we will remove it via executing her, since we don’t wat to leave behind any surprises.

Zagmander warns us that if we don’t go take care of Hellion quickly, he will escape. We head down to his lair and find he has kind of possessed a little drone and it the process turned it into a huge scorpion bot. He moves incredibly fast in it and hurts several people. Thankfully we are able to overcome him with Zagmander’s help.

The next day we successfully remove Zagmander’s curse and she disappears, never to bother us again. At this point we have finished of the Lords of Rust and find ourselves the defacto rulers of Scrapwall. However, Redtooth and the Steel Hawks seem to want us to leave soon. Redtooth is the only one with any power left and is eager to be the new force in town. I’m not sure what the Steel Hawks issue is. They were the very lowest faction when we arrived and they are no number two. We’ve been deliberate in our dealings with them and they know we’d like to see their position here improve. Our presence here can only be a boon to them as they raise themselves up on our coattails. Anways, we are now planning on relaxing a day or two and then progressing north to Chesed.

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More of the lower levels with Vidon
More Dark creatures exploding.

We move to the south and run into 6 small creatures like the ones that attacked us earlier. The ones that exploded after they died. There was a taller one that turned out to be a female. Arim went to check the passage. He found a cauldron of bubbling liquid. The general attitude seems to be to let it be until after we deal with the alien.

We find the bodies of Orcs and Ratfolk that appear to have exploded from the inside out. They figure out that the creature that did this was extraplanar and called a Xill. We wind up listening to Arim talking to a Xill. Finding out that she is trapped here by a curse. The Xill has convinced the others of the need to kill Helion now before he escapes. Helion does hit hard. I raged and got into range to attack his guards. Helion had 3 scrap yard robots that went down fairly easily. Mal drops a dark spell and Helion had to come out. He attacked the Xill. Helion dies when we combine attacks.

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Letters Home
letter 13 (Touch of stupidity)

(what i believe I am writing on paper) (As you read, think of Sean Connery narrating this)
_Dearest mother and father,
As an update from the past few hours we continued our trek into the enemies base, stamping out the cohorts of evil with the utmost efficiency. The first wave of minions tried and failed to corner us on the catwalk but the lads just couldn’t handle our group dynamic and thought our strategy. moving down the hallway, that was through a door on the catwalk, we preceded to the second door down the hallway, the first one being locked in such a manner that we couldn’t open it without a proper key card.

Getting through the second door, the buggers finally got smart and sent BIGGER fodder for us to slay in the vain attempt to FINALLY do us in, sadly for them that wasn’t the case. Because even though they had all the advantages to finish us off quickly, the only thing that allowed their plan to fail was that the minions not RUSHING us to keep us in the hall. This allowed us to barrel out into the opening and rain hell down upon their numbers with as much force and determination as a lion preying on a gazelle.

Ending the futile attempts of the evil doers we did what any self respecting adventurer would do and helped our selves to the spoils of battle. It would also seem that my companions found what they needed because they were able to open the room that was previously locked. Strange thing is that when we entered the room it was filled with roaches and more of that unpleasant fellow on the monitors. Honestly though i felt that the roaches were having a more important conversation in the few seconds that they had together than when the fellow tried to talk to my companions. But that’s a story for another time.

After that there isn’t much to tell. The only thing that i found odd was that it my companions started to talk in a dialect that i haven’t herd them use before. Weird to be sure but I won’t question it for now. There is only one more Lord o Rust left and we aim to do away with him just like his other comrades.

Wishing you all the best,
your son, and future hero,
Flynn Sileet,_

NOW WHAT WAS REALLY WRITTEN
(Turn of off the Sean Connery, and think of stereotypical drunk speech)

DSear ma ad pa
Walking cat was hiigh away from ground and ifghtz was easlizy. Touch siny pictre ana now everwy thng furry. Smawshin people, SMAWSHIN FACES and hawig goat tim wit frinds. Gotta kill un mas bad guy and laeve shite tpwn.

Wwrite LATER

Flymm Siluut

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Arim misses Hellion getting Labotomized

We continue our travels through the Lords of Rust base into the 2nd level. This place is half machine and half dungeon. It looks odd and the lighting sucks. Later we figure out that we are in a giant excavator that Hellion secretly plans on driving all the way to the capital in order to take on Unity. This giant contraption with help slightly less intelligent than the average goblin, he’s definately not as smart as I thought he was.

Our initial encounter is with three rogues. The only think of note is the explode upon death. We go into the next room and it is full of orcs, a huge ettin with a backdrop of a loud grinding mechanical noise. Hellion cast some truly beneficial spell on me. I’m not really sure what it did. It made my mind real cloudy, but as soon as I shake it off, I realize everything is dead. However, some more rogues tried to sneak up on me, so we had to deal with those.

We learn about Casandalee, an android that betrayed Unity and ran away with all of it secrets. Hellion thinks if he can find these secrets, he can learn these secrets and use them to stop Unity. Unfortunately Casandalee got killed by some of Unity’s thugs in the town of Iadenveigh, a bit to the West of Torch if I recall correctly. Kulgara, was planning on leading an assault upon this place, but isn’t quite sure where in this town to look even if she could take it. An added complication in this town is a group of druids who live there. They are a bit more militant about their hate for technology than your average druid, so walking into town with metal armor and weapons in the middle of a lightning storm would have been a very painful siege.

We search Kulgara’s room, but we don’t find too many tangible things. Seems she had aspirations of being a crafter, but couldn’t get her little golem to do much. However, we take her green access card and go to this room we had seen earlier. We enter the room and it is the control center for this excavator and the system where Hellion resides. We dispatch with mechanical cockroaches and I talk to Hellion a little. I tell him we’re just here to cause trouble and a second group is here to collect him and take him back to the Technic League. After our conversation I leave, but Susie pulls out an Inhibitor Memory Facet that she lifted off the corpse of the pilot/wraith we fought in the northeast part of town. She plugs it into the system and it locks in, labotomizing Hellioin. I can’t say he’ll be missed, but I was hoping I wouldn’t have to keep an eye on my own teammates. It looks like some of them are into looting corpses and not sharing with the party.

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Lower in the arena
Exploding creatures?

We went down a set of stairs and ran across another set of monitors. Helion cast a spell that confused the hell out of me. When we opened a door 3 darkly dressed small creatures attacked. As the others killed the creatures I tossed them over the edge to a floor 20 feet below. After all three were dead they exploded and the bodies disappeared leaving their gear behind. We checked the first door to see what looked like a creatures lair.

The second door was closed and had a card reader for a green card. Moving on we opened a third door to see 12 Orcs and an Ettin waiting for us. I think Helion cast another spell…….

I did manage to destroy a monitor before I had to retreat which irked me. I managed to hit my self and to hit the Orc with the chain sword. We got hit with 2 grenades that did a lot of damage. I am worried that I might wind up hitting a party member. I went forward to help take down the Ettin, but it was actually good that I did cause every time I was attacked I attacked that creature. Harkness drew some of the Orcs away and did his usual damage.

Between Dalora, Arim, Mal, and Susie they manage to take down the rest of the Orcs while I concentrated on Kulgara and her Chainsword weapon. Flynn will take the Chainsword. Arim wants to check out Kulgara’s room. They find some information that Harkness is going to compare his notebook to the journal we found.

They decide to check out the room we couldn’t get into earlier. Flynn opens the door and charges in and gets burned by some robots on either side of the door. Arim and I move in to eliminate the others. Arim is talking to Helion trying to convince him to work with us.

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