Madness Reach (D&D Next)

Welcome to Nowhere

Session 1

Sky

Lost in a sea of ivory white desert, lit by lapping waves of viridian light. A drunken faux’ristocrat is thrown from a lone standing door frame. John Sutton, professional charlatan found himself stranded in an unpalatable wasteland of heat, silence, and scattered doubloons.

Assuming he was dreaming, drunk or indeed dead, he took little notice of the broken Door and set course toward a stormy horizon. He wandered for days, coming across forgotten relics of bazaar variety; chests of gold and jewels; abandoned, a primitive broken air-glider; with not a casting point in sight, and scattered crust of barnacle like rust caked on almost every object.
It was not until a dark shape amidst the heat shimmer that John found relief. A deranged Illithid, void of brain-lust or ability to articulate, sold him an undead-cammel-drawn make-shift Carriage, and water enough to drown a thirsty Owlbear. The Illithid had left himself a very simple reminder on his seat.

[Remember to Eat – Remember to Drink – Deliver the Water”]

[You are Illithid – You are Hated – Defend yourself- Devour All – Trust None]

Having fished the glutinous garnish from his new water cocktail, John met Content Not Found: Shamrock and Sebastian, a near-drowned Circus Ringleader and Reptilian Sideshow. Shamrock was recovering from a nasty fall, and remembers only a Tower, a troop of armored Drow and the importance of a Giant Key. The situation was not any more plausible for poor John, but at least there was the possibility of a drink.

As the unlikely trio approached the heart of the storm, the wind appeared to fade, and they discovered the sand swallowed shipwreck of a burnt out Galleon, on a bed of strewn gold and jewels. The reality of being stranded with an abundance free wealth, was strangely melancholy.
A diminutively-mysterious & mysteriously-diminutive figure in Tricorn hat, Theatrical mask, and black cloth Robes made it clear he was not a desert dwelling jester, but in fact Atticus Flint, infamous Sky Pirate – and recent casualty of magical mutiny.

Inspection of the ship’s wreckage revealed a memorial of Names, Plans, Co-Ordinates and other depressed carvings by forgotten Heroes of times past. A clueless Kobald named ‘_Columbus_’ did what he could to help the situation, returning Shamrock’s Journal and revealing a large wideup Clock with a chalk weather map on its back

Repeated phrases on the walls of the Ship:

[Remember to Eat, remember to Drink] – [Rest in peace <various>] – [I am <various>] – [Do not forget…] – [It’s not worth it, give in to Madness.] – [Curse this rust! Curse this Madness!] – [When is it time to go?!]

Shamrock’s Journal chronicled that he had not only been here before, but had been part of a crew that built the large clock, in effort to find the “True Time”. It seemed Shamrock once knew the importance of keeping a Journal, documenting his actions and intentions. What had happened?

Atticus came across the well weathered Journal of a legend of Arcane Arts, one of such notoriety he was thought to be a fiction; “_Brightstaff_”. It told of epic battles in the pursuit of knowledge and peace in the endless struggle with his arch-enemy. The name appeared magically blurred.

Atticus had no time to properly investigate the magical Journal, as his attention was drawn outside, where a half-eaten woman was being sapped of blood by a swarm of vicious insects. After a fast, furious and near fatal battle, the lost nomads made plans to Sleep, prepare and continue their destination-less voyage together the next day.

Not feeling hunger, nor in the habit of taking advice from dead men, Attics refused to eat – and during his rotation of driving the carriage, though it best to stop, and go for a walk. When John and Shamrock found the unconscious, undressed Halfling, they feared the worst when in a sleepy stupor he did not remember his name.

Quickly their attention was taken by an encounter with a whistling Lioness, whose aimed heavy crossbow, was as much of a threat as her backwards hands. The leashed Woodelf slave tied to her belt received, barked and howled at John and Shamrock, as they attempted reason with her; quickly discovering, despite her uninjured body, she had no idea what she was, where she was going, who the elf was, or how to read the note left to her:

[You are Jenjia – Follow the Elf – Find Haven – Trust None – You must eat – You must drink – You are mine, I am yours.]

Denied this knowledge by John’s machiavellian wordplay, she broke down, hopeless. From the darkness, a curious Shamrock, was knocked down by a snarling Lion-Man, half encrusted in chalky green corrosion. Jumping to action Shamrock, John and Sebastian were throttled to the edge of their mortal coil – finding salvation through their teamwork and cunning.

As Shamrock went about stripping the Catpeople of their belongings, and Flesh. John discovered a new heading, carved into the Woodelf’s back bark was a Map marked “Haven”.

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