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Patent Pending, Session 1: Heart of the Witchlight Fens, Part One

We had our first session of a new D&D 4th Edition game, and it went well, I feel. I have two players who are old hands at 4E and three who are basically brand new to the system (but not to gaming). The new players are catching on to the rules quickly, which was a worry with something as complex as 4th Edition, of course.

I jokingly called the party "the Patent Pendings," so of course it stuck. It's a strange bunch:

  • Rollen Malagathbar, human wizard. His lover disappeared, and his master (her father) vanished in search of her. He specializes in illusions and enchantments, and he particularly likes to make big creatures attack themselves.
  • Nalla, goliath warden. Nature's protector, she is appalled by how fragile everything in human civilization seems to be.
  • Cordova Milner, human rogue. A circus acrobat-turned-thief, she is searching for her father, who sold her to the troupe when she was six. Mostly, though, she's in it for the money.
  • Carlianne "Carli" Remandile, half-elf bard. Her parents (or at least the couple who raised her) were into some very dark stuff, and she is rebelling from them by becoming a do-gooding adventurer.
  • Stasi, human artificer. She got bored being the store clerk at the magical sex-toy shop, so she's now adventuring because the money has to be better than retail. Her companion is a robot she makes out of spare parts. (I swear, this is the background the player walked in with.)
The party was hired by a circle of scholars to locate an elemental node deep within the Witchlight Fens. Their journey to the swamp was uneventful, until they were ambushed by a pair of crocodiles and a deathrattle viper. They found a pair of magic boots of stealth and a whistle that can teleport one's allies to her side.

Soon after, they encountered a patrol of lizardfolk and managed to parley with them. The patrol agreed to take them to their village. There, the elderly lizardfolk shaman told them that the elemental node was sacred ground. She would have to consult with the spirits before allowing them entry. She offered to let the party make camp in the village as long as they didn't talk to anyone or touch anything.

That night, pandemonium broke out. The elements rose up, with the ground shaking and the very wind taking on killing force in the form of many dust devil sprites and air elementals. The most dangerous part was gouts of flame shooting from the earth. Five lizardfolk children found themselves trapped in one such flame vent.

The heroes of Patent Pending sprang into action. Carli saved two children herself, while Stasi threw her robot into the fire and commanded it to save two more. Nalla blocked the last child's body with her own, taking the full heat of the flames. Rollen used his mind magics to clear out a number of dust devils. The entire party worked together to finish off the last of the elementals.

In thanks, the shaman agreed to let them visit the node and stop whoever was abusing its power in this way. And for her sacrifice, the shaman bestowed the spirits' blessing of blazing fangs on Nalla.

That's where we left off, with the party finishing their night's rest before heading to the node first thing in the morning.

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