The Breath of Sand

000 - Prologue
An unusual offer

Prologue:
The king has offered an astral diamond as a reward in a tournament at Temple Heights. While it is not the royal city, it is a convient location for a tournament of this size due to a large natural amphitheater and central location, as well as the home of the temple of Bahamut thus there is a large number of paladins, avengers, and invokers for security.

This extreme offer coupled with extremely low standards for entry (the fights are not designed to be lethal) has brought so many contestants from all the realm that the city is bursting with would be contestants and spectators.

Four would be heroes each set off to obtain a spot in the competition and hopefully a shot at the astral diamond.

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001 - The Trials
Each hero sets off to enter the tournament

[[:Othur Silber]] pushed his way through the crowded street as the milling throng pushed around him. Those closest to him tried to make way for his large frame, but couldn’t do so because of the massive amount of people crowding the streets. Normally people were not anxious to get in his way, but today was different. Not his 6’ 2" stature, nor his grizzled countenance would get him to the water district any faster. A low growl formed in his throat as he plodded on, not wanting to let [[:]] down. The captain of the guard [[:]] had requested his presence at [the drunken sailor inn] and that had been a while now. “Othur” came the familiar call, not happy, nor angry, just a raised voice to be heard obove the crowd. “Over Here” The captain was short for a dragonborn, but made up for it with extreme fighting prowess

The Woodelf Ranger is in town to fight for his family’s honor. before leaving home his father takes him out to practice and discuss things. After shooting a few targets and discussing the tournament, his father hands him a new bow that was his own and has now been passed down. After giving it a few test shots, he heads off into town just a mornings run from the forrest.

The Woodelf Avenger is a product of the last great war. being raised to hate the church and it’s warmongering for the king, she formed opinions based on her upbringing. Those ideas did not hold up with contact with the real world and the war. Her family was traveling as refugees seeking safety and a new home when a band of maurading halflings came and pillage the carravan. While her sister was killed, she and her parents were saved by a holy invoker of bahamut. Having her world view shattered and in a combination of grattitude and desire for revenge, she swore an oath of vengancne and justice and went to become an avenger. Dealing with the loss of one daughter her parents couldn’t deal with the perceived loss of another and disowned Enna. Her status with her family and clan have been removed and she no longer carries her family name.

The Eladrin Artificer lives in the city with his master Content Not Found: Japor. Having finished his apprentiship he stayed on to help {{:Japor]] with his latest and most daring project. There is however, 1 piece is missing and {{:Japor]] believes that an astral diamond will suffice and thus he sends his young charge off with a gift of a necklace that will help protect him.

The Trials and the Chase
Due to the massive ammounts of contestants, the officiators of the tournament decided that the first several rounds of combat will be fought by teams. Each contestant is assigned a team
if not already on one, and is then tested to see who will fight whom. the heroes have been chosen to fight as a team along with a minotar rune priest and are called to prove your worth. The Minotaur is known as Xanroar Bullheart

You enter what appears to be a practice yard. A wethered looking dwarf approaches you. She sizes your party up for a minute pause at each one of you as if to determine somthing then referes to a piece of parchment in her hands. Her lips curl up in more of a smirk than a smile and adresses you. I am Daratris, overseer of this yard. You are to be tested, the better you do here, the easier opponents you will face at the beggining of the tournament. You will be wise to impress me. Show me something unique, creative, yet above all effective. Time is short and I have other teams to get to. As she finishes, a slender human jumps out, snatches the parchment out of her hand and takes off down the road. After him, get that back and I will reward you with a high spot in the rankings.
The party sets off in pursuit. Kaspar, in the lead, gracefully flipped up to a rooftop to scout out the area and called to his companions. Othur, taking a more direct approach picks up a large rock and throws it after the thief, but misses. Lenthean, knowing of a mages shop close by rushes in to take advantage of the many teleportation scrolls in his stock. Enna thinking she knows what she’s doing grabs for a scroll at random, but Lenthean, tosses coins on the counter and grabs a different scroll and breaks the seal. Othur, charges through with reckless abandon finding himself on a rooftop. His momentum however carries him to the edge. Kaspar follows him through the portal and with the alacrity and deftness of his kin he pulls Othur back. Lenthan and Enna bring up the rear through the portal keeping low to try and keep a minimal profile. Lenthean spots the thief, but the thief turning around the corner spots the party. Thinking quickly Kaspar runs and yells to Othur to give him a boost. Othur grabs him and swings around letting him fly as Enna calls out a blessing from her god that the elf may fly true.

Having subdued the thief they find no possesions save the parchment and Othur advises his comrades that there is no use having him arrested as the jails are all full. The let the thief go and take the parchment back to Daratris. She applauds the groups teamwork and wishes them good luck. She tells them they will fight for the team of the boar for the red group. Daratris dismisses the party and moves on to the next team.

Xanroar Bullheart offers to take you to his cloister in the temple where you can stay. The town at this point is bursting with all the contestants and citazens. Although most of the party has places to go they decide to stick together to discuss strategy for the next day.

The Next Day
The team heads to the areana for their first fight. It is a fierce battle against a human named Krayed the Butcher and 5 of his soldiers. The team has a strong start as Caspar Takes our a soldier at range. The soldiers get a few hits off on the party. Enna and Othur dodge and block the clubs and move to flank while Lenthean takes a hit to the head. Enna decapitates two soldiers as Caspar recovers from a hand axe. Lenthian shoots his potions out of his cross bow at Caspar and Injects himself to revive the party. Xanroar finishes off the 4th soldier as Caspar and Enna rush to take out Krayd. Lenthian uses his light induced bolts to take the last soldier out as Xanroar follows with a charge but trips due to a bola thrown by krayd. Othur moves between them to protect the prone minotaur. Krayd kicks Othur in the chest and knocks him back. The rest of the party rushes in and surrounds Krayd. The crowd goes wild as the favored conestant is soundly defeated by the upset. The party heads out of the arena to recover.

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002 - The Invitation
After a victory, the heroes get some time for rest

Chapter 2

Having bested Krayd the butcher the party heads back out of the areana to recouperate. While you await your next battle, a messenger comes for Xanroar Bullheart with urgent news. He is needed urgently by the Heirophant of the Turco order to which he belongs. While he is saddened by the prospect of abandoning your team, he will not forsake his order or his oath and bids you good luck. The messenger also bears a message from Anzine, a local noble. The messenger informs you that she also has members of the Turco order that have been summoned and assuming that Xanroar will not forsake his duty, has sent you one of her most skilled servants to fight along your side. She also presents gifts for the party that the messenger gives you. The messenger advises you that he is currently engaged in his pre-battle meditation and will join you. Xanroar expresses his gratitude to Anzine to the messenger who then takes his leave of you. Xanroar follows him out. As the large frame of the min. exits the door, a tournament messenger advises you that you have 1 hour till your next fight.

(you have already had a short rest at this point)
The sack contains the following
200g (50g each)
5 ice arrows for the ranger (1d6 +slowed until end of its next turn)
3 healing potions
Utility Power (Healing) Consumable (Minor Action)
Effect: You drink the potion. If you have a healing surge, you must spend one. Instead of the hit points you would normally regain, you regain 1d8 + 1 hit points. If you are bloodied and don’t have any healing surges, you still regain the hit points. If neither of these things is true, there is no effect.
also some +1 throwing daggers for Enna and Othur.

After you divide the items up and empty the sack of it’s contents the bag shrinks down in size untill you can no longer see it and dissappears.

At this point the party sets off to determine what their next fight may entail. After some diplomacy, and some not so skilled bribery. the party learns that they are bringing back some older fights to the arena and are shown a door that is sealed. The door is moist and dripping slightly out of the edges. The party then heads back to the preparation room and are summoned to begin their fight.

They are taken to a different room that is several levels below the main floor. There they meet a cloaked figure introducing himself as Addic. He is tall and the party is somewhat disconcerted by his appearance. Enna is quite forward and friendly yet obviously wasn’t expecting her handshake to be returned by 4 other hands. The party called to attention by the officiating mage, lines up and prepares for battle. The mage opens a portal in the room and the party rushes through.

As you enter the arena, you are surprised at the change that it has undergone. The entire arena is filled with water from the river and there are two large ships floating peacefully in the center. Your team teleported onto the deck and an announcer shouts with magical amplification (first team to disable to other boat wins). and with that several mages start channeling at the water causing the boats to rotate around the arena and waves to crash over the rails of the deck.

Caspar jumps into action climbing up the rigging to the crows nest and calls to his party what he sees. Enna and Addic both leap across to the other boat. Othur grabs a cannonball from a nearby pile and throws it at the other ship. Lenthean enchants a cannon ball with magic and hands it to Othur to load. Caspar shoots arrows at the opposing team. Addic and Enna each take out a member of the other ships crew. Lenthean lights the cannon. Addic and Enna both hit the deck as the cannon ball shoots through the hull and explodes. Caspar takes out the last member of the crew as he climbs down the rigging. Othur grabs a boarding hook to toss to the other ship, but it grabs Enna’s shoulder instead. Addic grabs the rope to keeper her on board as Caspar shoots the rope pinning it to the railing of the ship. Addic and Enna rush across and Lenthean cuts the rope.

You are teleported off the ship and congratulated by several people. You are advised that you are done for the day and tomorrow is a holy day of Bahamut and there will be no fights, but instead a celebration. since a large majority of the teams have been either killed or left incomplete due to out of arena fighting or disqualified, the halls of the arena are quite empty in comparison to the previous day. You get back to your preparation room to gather your things. A note is laying on the table requesting your presence at the Anzine estate. a small coin bearing the seal of of house Anzine rests next to it. Enna grabs to note and reads “Congratulations on your splendid victory today, surely this will bring great honor and fame to the both of us. That being said, I would like to cordially invite you to join me at my estate for a meal and accommodations for the holiday festival tomorrow. You will need rest and preparation for the fights ahead of you. Also I have a matter of business to discuss with you but I will not say more until tonight. Regards.”

The party sets off to the Anzine estate spirits lifted by the recent victory. On their way through town. several people recognize them and congratulate them. They finally reach the gates of the Anzine Estate and a large alchemical Gollum coleuses infront of them. It demands what their business is with the Anzine’s, but grants them access after Enna gives it the coin. The party heads inside and are met by several servants. The lady Anzine welcomes them and each is escorted to their own room. Each person provided a room according to their homland and style of living. After resting, washing, and donning the provided festival clothing, each is then escorted back to the main hall.

In the hall the party is seated and introduced to several other friends of the Anzine estate. Qexie, is introduced as the mentor of Addic and the advisor to the Lady among other things. Also introduced is Lenthians mentor: Tholy. A cheerful halfling who’s tales border on the absurd are full of hyperbole and embellishment. As the evenening procedes the party continues to enjoy the spread set before them. Qexie, although a bit unnerved by Tholy’s outlandish tales, visibly loosens after a while. (and a few drinks)

The festivities are soon interupted as Tholly stands up to leave. As he gets to the door a large and very angry Krayd storms through the front door knocking tholly comically agains the wall. He demands justice blah blah blah claiming to have been poisoned. The capt of the guard is there trying to calm him. Lady Anzine responds calmly and diplomatically, and after a short exchange, krayd leaves. The guests resume eating as lady anzine apologizes for the intrusion. Guards appear and help Tholly up, but before the party can do much more, arrows are flying from the balconies. Caspar and Othur flip over a table to hide behind it and realize their weapons have been attached to the underside. Grabbing their armaments they burst out to face a somewhat larger krayd and a group of well armoured halfilngs with glowing red eyes who have stormed through the front entrance again knocking tholly against the wall. Magical construct guards have appeared and are fighting the archers. The lady is teleported away and Qexie rushes off to join the fray in another part of the castle.
The party quickly enters the fray and several are wounded. Lenthean does his best to keep everyone alive and Addic relesease powerful attacks of wind and air. Tholly also joins the fight using his various contraptions to aid in healing and lobing a few explosive pouches into the melee. After a long and hard battle, the party is vicorious, however severly wounded. The fighting has died out throughout the rest of the estate and the lady Anzine appears with Qexie. Her garments have multiple tears in them and she is carrying a hand crossbow and a short wand of somesort. She apologizes again for the danger and sends her servants to provide medical attention to each of the injured and to escort everyone to their rooms for some much needed rest.

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003 - Why'd it have to be bugs

The party wakes rested the next morning. It is a holy day of Bahamut and despite the large skirmish last night, the halls look not only pristine, but also have been decorated for the holiday with platinum and gold decorations. The party is summoned to a private chamber that resembles a large library with a massive table in the middle. All kinds of maps and other books are spread out across the table. The capt of the guard is lounging in a corner smoking a longstem pipe and discussing off hand things with a short stocky human. The dwarfs legs swinging a foot off the ground. Tholly is likewise lounging in a large overstuffed chair, tinkering with a small spherical device and muttering to himself the lyrics of a festive song. Qexie and lady Anzine are bent over several maps on one side of the table, debating what appears to be strategy.
The party enters and is greeted by Qexie and Lady Anzine. The others look up upon their arrival, but stay visibly relaxed. The holiday is held on the summer solstace. The party is seated around an empty hearth that is swept clean and servants appear with cold wine mixed with local berries. Depsite the excessive heat that occurs during the solstace holiday, the room is quite comfortable and relaxing. Lady Anzine sits regally upon an armchair and explains that there is much to discuss. As the others in the room gather around the large sitting area.
The lady explains that there is a danger and there is much to be done, but first things first.
We are facing a time spoke in the prophecies long ago. Much will be required of us in the coming days. We all here serve the light and as such we shall be united.
Let us not be to hasty, responded qexie. There is much we don’t know, and until we are certain let us not make ourselves targets for our enemies.
We are already targets, but never the less I have decided that more knowledge in this case would not be a bad thing.
No, that is not what I’m saying, we shouldn’t send them into harms way for the book, it is reckless and foolhardy.
nonsense, they are more than capable and up for the task, although it shall ultimately be their own decision not yours.
The lady explains to the party that a certain man lving down river on the coast has disappeared and that he has, in his possession a tome of great importance. She asks that the party go and find him, bringing back both him and the tome
The party sets off and hits up a local establishment to see if they can locate the man or the tome. They approach a promising looking individual hoping to garner some sort of information from him, he agrees to help them, but as he stands up a bright light emits from his hand and the party is unconscious. They awake chained to the wall and unable to move, the man from the tavern is a friend of the owner of the dungeon and explains what happened. the owner of the dungeon interrogates them, but upon refusing to talk he gives them an ultimatum that he will give them an hour and upon his return if no one will talk he will kill one of them. He then leaves.
As the party is trying to come up with a way to escape, tholy shows up magically shrinking himself to fit through the barred window. He then proceeds to collect their gear and then procures magical pouches which he sticks to the wall around them. He then grabs one of their restraints and hoists himself up. yelling hang on, there is a bright orange light and the party finds themselves staring up at at a raftered roof. Tholy throws a cloth at them which grows in size and covers them all. He then starts up his boat and takes off down the river.

Upon returning to the estate, the party is met by qexie who berates them for their lack of discretion. Tholy however, is unfazed as he used the diversion of the party being captured to obtain the book. The characters take some time to recover and head off to their rooms for the night.

The next morning the party sets off to the arena hoping to win today which would leave only one more fight for the championship. They are faced with a lone figure. As the fight starts the party rushes to attack him. He takes a few hits from range attacks, but does not falter. He then summons a collection of monsters in front of him. Two large beetle’s move and attack Othur and Enna by jumping on their heads. Two swarms of giant insects harry Caspar and Lenthean while two giant centipedes Addic. The party helps each other and slowly takes out the summoned creatures, enduring all the while, the constant bite, sting and slimy sludge of goo. Seeing an opening after the summoned creatures are about half gone. Caspar Shoots the summoner hoping to destroy the head of the snake as it were. Picking up on his Idea (and having dispatched a giant centipede.) Addic joins him. He goes down, but the other creatures fight on. After regrouping the team is victorious.

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003.1

Here are the questions for your characters:

Background:
How old is he?
What race is she?
Where was she born?
Who were his parents?
What religion is she?
What religion are his parents?
How was her relationship with her parents?
What was happening during his childhood?
Where did she grow up?
How did he spend his time as a kid?
How happy was her childhood?
How did he decide what to do as an adult?
What does she do now?

Personality:
What one word describes his personality best?
What one thing does her personality most remind you of?
What are his motivations and goals?
How far will she go to achieve goals?
What is his greatest fear?
What is her greatest love?
How competitive is he?
What are her passions?
What is his best quality?
What is her worst quality?
How does he react to different types of people?
How do different types of people react to her?

Significant Events:
What was her first experience with death?
What was his most important experience with love?
When did she fi rst experience betrayal?
What were the major historic events during the character’s life?
What other events have shaped his life?
Who were these experiences with?
When did they happen?
Where did they happen?
How have these events shaped the character into what she is now?

Important People:
Who was his fi rst love?
Who was her best teacher?
Who was his biggest inspiration?
Who were her role-models?
What enemies has he made?
Who else is important to their life? Why?
How have these people changed the character?
Where is the character’s relationship with them now?

Apperances:
How tall is he?
How would you describe her build?
What does he wear at work? At play? When no one’s watching?
Is her posture good or bad? Why?
How does he stand? Sit?
What color skin, hair, and eyes does he have?
What defi ning features does she have? Scars? Birthmarks?
What is his face to the world? To the mirror?
What about her hygiene?

Voice
How talkative is she?
Does he talk quickly or slowly?
Does she speak loudly or softly?
Is his voice smooth or abrasive?
What accent does she speak with?
Is his voice deep or high? Rich or nasal?
What mannerisms and catch phrases is she fond of?
Does he view speech as a tool or as a pastime?

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