Dark Sun: The Scorched World of Athas

Sand Raiders

Dinner with the Captain
After being released from the arena the heroes split up to take care of personal business within Altaruk before meeting at Tellemon’s villa for the dinner gathering. Morg and Vinara traveled back to the Elven Market where they were able to secure supplies for the encampment in the Ringing Mountains with a shipment of goods purchased from House Wavir. Gwyn spent time searching for signs of those who could help continue her training and then smartened up before dinner.

At Tellemon’s villa the heroes enjoyed an excellent meal and learned more about Tellemon and his views on the situation in Tyr, the governor of Altaruk and arcane magic. The others at the party echoed his views that the chaos in Tyr was a terrible consequence of the Deposers of Kalak’s actions and no good comes from disrupting the order.

The party was interrupted when a messenger arrived telling one of the guests, a Dwarf named Rhotan Vor of House Wavir, of a missing caravan. Morg, using the Way to overhear the conversation, offered to help find the caravan in exchange for regular shipments of supplies to his encampment. Agreeing in principle, the Heroes stayed at Tellemon’s villa and headed out in the morning.

Hunting Party
The heroes set forth the next morning to try and find the missing caravan. The day quickly became brutally hot and although the sandstorms had subsided during the night, there was still a sweltering breeze.

After a few hours of searching the party located some wagon tracks in jumble of boulders and creosote bushes. Unfortunately, the heroes were not alone, and if not for Vinara’s keen senses, the party would have been ambushed by a small pack of silt runners. Although the battle was fierce, the heroes prevailed and none of the silt runners remained.

Plundered Wagon
KruthikAfter a short rest, the search for the wagon continued. With no luck for several hours, the party was about to give up, when the wagon, half buried by sand, was spotted in a jumble of rocks. From the distance there was no sign of the cargo or the drivers, instead the wagon was crawling with a large number of creatures with chitinous shells and spike-like claws, Kruthik. They were so focused on picking over the wagon and chattering to each other that the heroes were not immediately spotted.

Seizing the opportunity, Morg and Vinara managed to sneak close without detection. In unison they charged the largest creature while Gwyn unleashed her magic. Taken by surprise the beast was severely wounded before it knew what happened. Though they fought well, the tenacious creatures managed to inflict many wounds on the heroes before finally falling.

While they rested the heroes discovered more tracks and drag marks leading further into the hills. Although they were nearly spent, they were too close to their goal to give up, and so they continued on.

Broken Tower
The tracks ended at the weathered ruins of an ancient tower. Although nothing remained above ground, a flight of stone stairs were found in the foundation, which ended at a set of wide doors. Fearless, Morg opened the doors revealing a large vault which was home to a small band of silt runners and a Ssurran.

The battle was fierce as the ssurran demonstrated strong mental powers and the silt runners wielded poisoned blades. It took every last ounce of strength the heroes could muster to finally defeat their reptilian adversaries, but they were eventually victorious. Unable to continue, the party found shelter in the vault.

Throughout the vault the heroes were able to recover the majority of the caravan’s cargo and three of the four drivers (the final driver having been the last meal of the silt runners). After resting, the heroes, along with the drivers Milos, Alia and Flaron salvaged all they could and made the journey back to Altaruk.

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Bloodsand Arena
Betrayal At Altaruk

Kaldras’s Betrayal
Brawl in the MarketAfter the long march from Tyr the caravan finally arrived at the city of Altaruk in the early morning. At the gates Kaldras was able to move quickly past the guards with a few well placed bribes and the caravan reached the Elven Market. With the heroes helping to unload the kanks, Kaldras and the elves made arrangements sell their cargo and pay the heroes.

When the elves emerged from the tents, Vinara was quick to notice that they were fingering their blades rather than their coin purses. Alerted to possible trouble, the group was not surprised when a number of elf snipers emerged from the surrounding tents along with several kank spitters. Combat ensued as the elves attempted to subdue the heroes. A decisive blow by Morg, which nearly separated Kaldras’s arm from his shoulder, demoralized the elves. Before the raging barbarian could finish off the elves, the city guards appeared, along with their captain, ordering a halt to the hostilities.

The Captain, a human named Tellemon, who wielded a steel blade, demanded an explanation for the disturbance. Unmoved by the heroes story of betrayal by Kaldras, but not totally trusting the elves, Tellemon ordered the matter to be settled in the arena. With that, the city guards took both the heroes and the elves into the holding pens.

Coins in the Coffer
Locked in cells of the arena barracks, the heroes received their instructions for the games. The two groups were to engage in non-lethal combat by taking large ceramic coins from the center of the arena to one of the large stone coffers at the edge. Each coin scored the team one point, the team with the most points at the end of allotted time wins the arena game and will be judged to have been been telling the truth about the altercation in the Elven Market.

During this preparation time Morg used his gift in the Way to eavesdrop on the elves and learn part of the strategy they intended to employ against the heroes. Without more delay the elves were lead out of the barracks, with the party following a few minutes behind.

The arena has been planted with razor-sharp brambleweed, making it dangerous to move across many parts of the arena floor. A gong sounded the beginning of the contest and both sides moved quickly to gather coins, intercepting the opposing team and stealing coins from the other teams coffer. During the first few minutes Vinara manages to disable a few of the elves using the brambleweed and Gwyn had deposited several coins. A twist in the contest occurred when two large spiders were set free in the arena and begin harassing both groups. Morg decides to distract a spider attacking Gwyn and provide her with more coins by hurling the coins from the center of the arena to the edge.

After the alloted time, the final gong sounded and the heroes were victorious, with a last minute coin swap and steal from Vinara. Disappointed at the loss of the potential slaves as well as the humiliation of being defeated in the arena, the Moonrunner elves paid their fines and skulked off. The heroes were greeted by Tellemon who congratulated them on the victory and complemented them on their use of original tactics. Before departing, he invited them to his villa for dinner that evening for a small social gathering.

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Bloodsand Arena
Betrayal At Altaruk

A Change in Plans
The outcasts Morg and Vinara arrived at the city of Tyr hoping to find food and supplies for the encampment in the Ringing Mountains. Instead they found the city in chaos following the death of the sorcerer-king Kalak, and their hopes were dashed as the turmoil made all resources precious and unobtainable. Hoping to make some money and journey to a more stable city, they hired on with an elven caravan headed to the city of Altaruk

The Elf Gwyn, hoping to find contacts within the city to aid in her training, found only chaos within the city walls. Inadvertently crossing a couple of well-connected thieves, the city became more dangerous to her than the wastelands. Trying to escape the city undetected, she hired on with an elven merchant of the Moonrunner tribe to guard a caravan heading to the city of Altaruk…

Road to Altaruk
Kaldras of the MoonrunnersThe heroes gathered with the caravan master, Kaldras, outside the city walls and the caravan formed up. The cargo, made up of unassuming ceramic wares, was loaded onto two large kanks and they headed southeast towards their destination. Travelling on foot, the elves kept their distance from the hired guards. Morg, Vinara and Gwyn tried their best to keep up with the fast insects and elves.

The party crossed stony barrens, avoiding the many landslides through a combination of luck and skill, and made their way into the sandy wastes in just over day. Pushing through the deadly sandstorms, freezing nights and blistering days, they managed to not lose their way in the dunes. The dunes gave way into twisting canyons in the badlands on the third day.

Raider Attack
Within hours of entering the badlands the caravan came under attack by a small group of raiders and their slaves. Barely alerted to their approach by falling rocks, the elves hid with the kanks, letting their hired guards deal with the threat.

Moving quickly Morg and Vinara, with her pet Bear, moved to engage the raiders in melee, while Gwyn stayed back. The group made quick work of the slaves, Morg’s axes cutting down several in one blow each. Vinara and Bear helping to protect the cargo from being taken by the flankers. Gwyn slew one of the raiders with a jet of flame she conjured. Although it appeared to be elemental, Morg recognized it as arcane magic.

Recovering from the attack, the caravan regrouped and continued on to Altaruk. Able to reach the city in the morning, Kaldras dispatched one of his sons to run ahead and alert the tribe members of his pending arrival.

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Introduction

Death of KalakIt is the 19th day of Scorch in the season of High Sun of the Year of Priest’s Defiance in the 190th King’s Age.

Tyr is a city-state in chaos, and paradigms across Athas are snapping. Kalak, one of the nearly omnipotent sorcerer-kings, is dead. A band of rebels, now known as the Deposers of Kalak, laid low the centuries old tyrant. In the wake of the great arcanist’s downfall, the city’s oppressive order has crumbled. Factions struggle for power, snatching at scraps of influence and wealth as templars, Kalak’s agents, struggle to reassert civic authority. Howls of anarchy mix with the joyous whoops of freed slaves in a cacophony that has yet to quiet since the world was turned on its head.

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