Darkness Over Golarion

Centaurs are majestic
Jakki contemplates her new life

As it was her intention to let her friends rest, Jakki quietly slipped out from the tented enclosure the tribe had set up for them. Although she was light on her feet, she was not totally stealthy and if anyone had heard her they made no protest. She had ditched her more sturdy traveling gear and armour for the one pretty, lighter dress she owned. It reached a few inches above her knees, enough to conceal the dagger she wore strapped to her leg, and showed a slight bit of cleavage, enough to distract those she hoped too.

Gorm had said she should wear more dresses, so she was doing just that while there was no reason to hide behind armour. She liked her little Oni-bake, he had a hidden heart and was the first one to show her kindness in a long time. Somehow she felt safe with him around, and his presence always seemed to bring the best out of her.

Akorian seemed similar to her, quiet and mysterious but she did appreciate that he made sure he could always attend to her wounds. The alternative to her was frightening, she feared she would become like the one she was descended from, a creature that sucked the souls from the innocent. That was why she had begun her nighttime excursions, hoping to find the guilty to replenish her body, but she still feared even that would blacken her soul. Since meeting the magician and his unique ability to heal her, the temptation had begun to lessen.

Kitso and her strange snake companion was another one she could relate to. Although Jakki did not know the truth of it, she felt as if the summoner like her was an outsider from her community. However what she saw most in Kitso was her inner beauty, and as Shelyn taught, one must always look for the beauty inside. The Orc had more beauty inside her than some elves showed on the outside. But contrary to Shelyn’s teachings, Jakki would far more likely take the unkind elf into her arms than a kind hearted Orc.

It was one of her many weaknesses, she was easily seduced by beauty and craved to be loved. She recalled that day when she first arrived in these new lands. She had helped a tavern maiden stave off some unwanted attention, only to have the now awed woman invite what she thought was a beautiful mysterious Tian man back to her room. The Dhampir knew she should have refused, it was the curse of the beauty of her blood, and her own vanity that lead to agreement. She also wondered if the touch of blood of an innocent would not darken her soul, perhaps the monster was only there if you drained the victim of life or their corrupted soul tarnished yours. She recalled that once the truth of her gender was revealed she had paid the woman to hold her in her arms and tell her she loved her. The next day she realized that if she paid the women that much money to beat her she would have obliged just as willingly.

Jakki appreciated the kindness of Ileos in letting all these strangers into her home. The swords-woman had not been shy with her hospitality and so Jakki was glad to help her hunt down the halfling that had harmed her father.

She did not know Mera that well yet, but accepted the woman was a capable fighter, although her flaming sword did make the vampire child uneasy. She may not fully understand her heritage but Jakki knew enough to to know fire could destroy her.

Jakki slipped the piece of mirror she had found out of her backpack, she had straightened the edges and bound them in leather. Although it did not look perfect it served the purpose she required. There was slight trepidation as she raised the mirror to her face. To her relief she saw her reflection staring back at her. She quickly applied some touches of makeup to brighten her features, give life to her pale skin and accentuate her eyes. It was strange, she had used deception so long to hide that she was a woman, now she used it to show she was a beautiful woman. Asami it had been so long since she had heard her real name spoken by another, she thought as she glided over the meadow towards the centre of the Centaur encampment.

The first guard she came upon, greeted her pleasantly (perhaps his child was one of those they had rescued) and although she was not able to proceed further into the encampment he escorted her towards an area where Windsheer would be able to meet her. She was left alone with a reminder not to roam too far into the camp. His stern warning had not been necessary as she had no intention to wonder amongst the centaurs. While she was not mounted she found their sheer size and majesty intimidating.

Jakki didn’t have to wait too long before she could see the female centaur approach, her perception was in tune enough that she could sense one beat of hooves and not the same heavy ones that had left her alone earlier. She breathed a sigh of relief that Windsheer had agreed to meet her. Her eyes adjusted to the nights light and looked out at the approaching centaur. Windsheer’s hair drifted behind her like a mane and Jakki was reminded of her long flowing hair she had cropped to hide her gender. She subconsciously neatened her appearance, brushing her fringe from her eyes and standing straight in a vain attempt to match the centaur’s height.

“I hear you were looking for me,” Windsheer announced as she came to a halt an arms length away from the dhampir.

Jakki had to scold herself for almost reaching out to touch the centaur’s flank. She had always had a little affinity to animals, especially rodents and canines, but her various mounts had always remained calm in her presence, another pleasant reminder of her humanity. She also felt a little intimidated by Windsheer’s beauty and wondered with embarrassment if the centaur could sense it.

“Yes…I was just interested to know if …if all the colts are well,” she held out her hand, “and I have a gift for you. Something I made while I had the time.”

The young woman opened her hand revealing the leather bracelet, she had crafted earlier, that she had clutched desperately all the way from their encampment.

“Normally such a gift would be made from the fine silks of my land, but I did not have any on hand and besides the more natural leather suits you better.”

Windsheer reached down and took the bracelet with a smile. She studied it for a while before slipping the band over her hand and tightening it around her wrist.

“The symbols mean beauty and peace in my lands, together they signify tranquility with ones surroundings,” Jakki smiled, “I thought it suited you. You are beautiful and seem the most tranquil of those we have met.”

“Thank you,” the centaur replied, “it is find craftsmanship and will always remind me of the deed you and your friends accomplished for us.” She took a few more moments to study the band, “it will remind me of the strange human who feels sorrow regarding children yet will not speak of the cause.”

Seeing Jakki’s confusion the centaur druid continued, “you seemed very angry that the young had been stolen and swore to rescue them at all costs. Something I believe you saw to at risk to your own life and prayers to a god you do not know.” Windsheer stopped her pacing and looked down at the girl.

Her scrutiny caused Jakki to look away, “my blood is tainted with the undead,” she replied sadly, knowing it would not sit well with the druid. “Whether by conception or the unnatural tainting after I was in the womb I do not know…none know the truth of it.” She looked up again, “I can never fully love, as I do not wish to curse my children with such a burden.”

Their further conversation was disturbed by the thunderous approach of Nightfire, his hooves beating the ground as he neared them, before coming to an abrupt stop just inches away from the Dhampir. He looked down at Jakki, revelling in the girls discomfort at his closeness.
Jakki found the centaur male as intimidating as Windsheer for the same reasons, he was majestic and powerful and the human part of him was as appealing to her eye. However she couldn’t help her hand from reaching towards the concealed knife beneath her dress. She looked up at him, feeling little more than a cornered animal that was being inspected by a predator.

“No need to intimidate the girl, Nightfire she already respects you and has earned our respect.”

“Yes all our guests have earned our gratitude, even the beast called Gorm.”

That angered the dhampir and she felt the need to defend her friend. “He was instrumental in our success,” Jakki said, her hand leaving the dagger concealed, “he may have no social skills but he has a heart that deeply cares.”

The male centaur nodded reluctantly, “so was that your reason for your visit, to tell us of your friends heart,” he smiled, “or was it to issue a challenge on his behalf. It is a fight we are both eager for and hopefully neither of us wish it to be to the death now.”

“She brought me a gift,” Windsheer announced, showing him the bracelet around her wrist.

“I see, do humans not give such gifts to their lovers,” he grinned at both the woman, “is that your intent.” He looked across at Windsheer, “she is dressed differently to when we first met,” he indicated to Jakki, “no hat to hide her face, her features not hidden behind armour.” He grinned down at the girl, “or is it perhaps me you came to see, I hear human females can’t resist my kind.”

“That is satyrs,” Windsheer interjected,

“Ye….No…I….I….that was not my..,” the dhampir stammered as if caught in a lie.

“Relax child,” the druid interrupted her, “he only seeks to tease you. Nightfire has been so angry since the young were taken that now following their return he relaxes with too much brevity.”

“Oh…,” Jakki recovered her composure, “well perhaps he should find other ways to relax instead of embarrassing others. There are many beautiful distractions if he cared only to look for them.” Her gaze wondered to Windsheer as she again considered if the two cared more for each other than they showed.

Nightfire laughed, “our meeting may not have started well but we truly are grateful for your aid. Next time we meet it will be under friendlier terms and perhaps even have a friendly bout.” He nodded at them both before turning and trotting away.

“Again thank you for the gift, it will always remind me of you. May Erastil guide your aim.”

“Goodbye Windsheer, I truly hope we meet again. May Shelyn favor you with love.”

Of Toys and Men


After the night at the haunted courthouse the group gathered at the house of Ileos’ adoptive family, only to find out that her adoptive father Menias was attacked 3 days prior.

Deciding to question him further about his attacker once he had awoken from his healing sleep, the group decided to stay the night. Unfortunately they discovered something far more sinister happening in the Eastgate wing of Absalom.

There is no rest for the wicked as the group fount out. Their second night together as a group would prove to be almost as eventful as their first. Discovering some residents getting stolen away in the night by small robed figures, the group decided to track the would be kidnappers to a small abandoned cathedral.

Once inside the group found to their horror that a small army of animated slaying dolls with razor sharp claws were taking people and transforming them into dolls through the use of an evil magical box. Being led by a malicious entity in the form of a puppet named Maligno.

After defeating the slaying dolls and both a short battle with a dire bat that seemingly arrived from out of nowhere, and a rather cheeky mimic in the guise of a mirror, the group gave chase after Maligo.


Tracking Maligno to a nearby toy store, the group had to get past magically animated toys. Kitso taking some severe damage from the toys before Gorm (with Akorian’s magical assistance) turned into a raging beast, demolished the entire toy store!
Jakki scaling the outside of the storefront got to the roof and came face to face with Maligno! in a struggle amid the lightly falling snow Jakki managed to get the upper hand and ended Maligo’s evil with the sound of her pistol echoing through the night. Another shot from her and a crossbow bolt from Akorian “Just to make sure.” sealed the deal.

And while that happened, Gorm, giving in completely to his bestial rage tore out the throat of Maligno’s, seemingly timid creator, the old man Guiseppe. Covered in the blood of the old man, Gorm regained his senses as his rage subsided.
Inside he could feel, his demonic father, wherever he may be, was proud of his little boy. So too could Gorm tell that his siblings knew as well that their “father” had a new favourite for his return to the world of Golarion.

Epilogue 5.

Shortly after the strange events at the courthouse, one one evening you, Kitso have a very restless sleep.
On this night you dream but it does not feel like a dream, it feels like something more. A portent perhaps.. You see yourself flying across the surface of Golarion.
Suddenly you descend without warning, and rapidly the world goes dark.
As light slowly returns you find yourself staring in awe at a massive city sitting upon gargantuan skulls.
Whether these skulls come from some protean giant race from long ago, or simply carved in by the inhabitants of the city, you do not know.
Before you can give it too much thought, you are shunted into the city and find yourself in a large room, lit only by a few candles you notice two figures in the room. One hooded and armoured, standing beside an ashen-gray skinned male who kneels shirtless before a single candle.
The shirtless figure speaks softly and the hooded figure bends beside him to listen.
Very softly you here these two speak…

“It has begun. It is heading this way.”

“What, what comes here?” replies the hooded figure in a raspy yet feminine voice.

“As black as the knight sky, yet glistening like mithril, doom comes to Golarion. The living darkness who’s only purpose is the death of ALL things.”

“We must prepare. We must gather our cursed saviors.”

Epilogue 4.
That thing you see at the corner of your eye

As you leave the courthouse with these strange new individuals that have come into your life, the first glimpse of red on the horizon signalling the coming of the morning, you can’t help but feel a shiver down your back, as if someone just walked across your grave. You catch yourself looking off into the distance for something, not sure what you might see.
You cannot shake the feeling that someone or something is following you, nay, hunting you.
You dismiss the thought and start off with your new companions when out of the corner of your eye you catch a glimpse of a lone figure far off on a rooftop. You blink and look again but see nothing save only a carpet on a washing line.
Your sense of dread only grows with each day since you started seeing this “entity”.
At first you dismissed these sightings as an overactive imagination but now you are certain it is not. Up till now you have seen it twice before, this is the third. Each time it only gets closer, though you have managed to stay ahead of it so far, you wonder how many more times will you see it before it is upon you.

Epilogue 3.
Death beyond the Rivers Edge

His legs ached and his chest burned. Never had he pushed himself to these limits. Devrin Rydell was a joke among his peers, but he was a workable investigator. At this moment he wished he’s taken up another profession, that and cursed himself for not getting more exercise instead of letting his hirelings do all the legwork around the office.

He rounded a corner to catch his breath. Heaving and sweating profusely he looked down at his blood covered clothing, his hands and equipment. The remnants of the mercenaries he’d hired to come help him on this trip. All gone.

He looked around the corner. The streets were deathly silent and the the road to the bridge and the was short but looked so far and perilous. He was sure his legs would collapse beneath him any second.

“I told those fools we should have gotten here earlier. But NOoooOOOOOO, ‘We don’t believe in ghosts” fools.’ He remarked sarcastically as the sunset disappeared and gave way to night.

Hushed whispers brought Rydell back to the task at hand. “Gotta get to the boat.”

He moved silently along the wall to the next street over. Not the slightest movement. He made a break over to the next set of buildings. Barely making a sound despite his size. He looked back from where he came and realised that he should inject some urgency into his flight.

Across the way he watched as a green mist enveloped the building and came pouring slowly out the alleyway. Shadowy figures lurching and moving inside the fog. On occasional burst of eerie light highlighting the ghastly features of the things inside the sickly green mist.

“Better hussle your fat ass Rydell or you’re gonna lose it!”

Moving between the buildings as fast as he could muster he was managing to stay ahead of the mist but it was moving steadily towards him. Finally he gasped, his heart ready to burst as a smile crept on his face, the boat and was just there, a few yards away he could see it in the middle of the river next to the bridge. The lamp already burning thanks to the riverhand he’d hired to take him here.

Wait a sec, what was it moving…

“Goddamnwhoreson is leaving me here!!!”

“Come back, wait you goblin licking dullard!! He screamed as he ran, again, down the sandy road towards the boat. Devrin was almost to the riverbed when he got knocked from his feet.

He was a bit of a ruffian in his youth so he could take a hit and knew how to roll with it, but he wasn’t young and it hurt like a horse’s kick to the gonads. He crouched and let loose a bold from his heavy crossbow and he could hear a solid hit but the massive shape barely budged. The looming thing stood over him as the green mist enveloped them both.

Claws from things in the mist clawed at him. He bashed something in the face with the butt of his crossbow and shanked another with a dagger he quickly drew. But yet more came on. He screamed in rage and dodged a swing from the massive creature in the mist. He wheezed as his broken rib pained from the first blow he got from the thing. The boat meanwhile slowly went down the river. The soft din of combat and death echoing in the night air.

As the boat went under the bridge , the riverhand heard a roar and when he came out the other side he was welcomed by a large shadow on the boat a split second before crash-landing hard! The boat rocked and threatened to capsize, thankfully it was a sturdy boat.

The riverhand looked on and drew his sword thinking he was sure to face some grisly thing when he heard Devrin groan and roll over. Jagged cuts and bruises covering his form. “Put that away son and get rowing, get us outta here…”

Devrin looked back to shore and saw hundreds of shadowy figures standing there. Staring silently in the night unmoving as the boat travelled further and further away.

“…I have to tell Akorian what I’ve found.”

End Epilogue 3

Epilogue 2.
Tarnished Blades of the Past

PLEASE! DON’T KILL HIM!!” Runa pleaded, tears streaming down her often jovial, warm and welcoming face. Now however, it only showed fear and desperation.

“Shut. Your. Mouth. Roonah…
“Or I’ll take your tongue and throw it to the rats.”

Runa knew that the intruder meant every word and whispered quietly, watching helplessly. Wondering how this happened…

Earlier that night Runa awoke, startled by a sound. She was certain it was nothing as she sat up and with her fingers brushed away her silvery graying hair. She listened for a moment longer but heard nothing. Still, in this day and age it’s best to be sure. Leaning over she shook Menias awake and with a groan he opened one eye.

“Menias, I thought I heard something downstairs.”

Menias sat up and listened. Still nothing. Menias, being a swordsman of some renown and having some experience in adventuring when he was younger noted that the lack of noise, not even from the usual birds outside in the garden, signaled that something was amiss.

“It could just be a cat.” He said, trying to ease Runa’s worry. “But I’ll check and make sure.”

Menias climbed from his bed and pulled on some breeches. Still fit for a man in his 60’s he took up his own slender sword and flipped it through the air catching it deftly with a wink back to Runa. “Just in case it’s a territorial tabby my love.” Then he exited the room into the darkened hallway…

Moment’s passed and Runa’s worry grew. This was taking too long, she thought to herself. She climbed slowly out of bed and opened up a long wooden chest that was close by. Removing a bunch of fabics and clothing and gabbing what lay below she drew out her own sword.
Drawing the blade from it’s sheath and turning towards the door she stopped dead in her tracks and almost dropped the blade from sheer fright!

The door to her room, slowly opened… ever so slowly… revealing a shadowy figure… a child in the darkness of the hallway… a grinning child that sent chills up her spine.

The child moved and up came a slender blade and Runa knew that it was no child….

“Where is Menias, Runa?”

“F-F-Flensa!” What’re you…?"

“I only ask once hag… now answer me!” The small figure hissed with threatening anger that seemed to grow with each word towards Runa.

At that second Flensa dove into a side long roll, just as Menias’s blade stabbed down to where she stood but a split second before! “You witch, don’t you dare threaten my wife in my house!” he warned.
Flensa came up out of her roll with her sword at the ready in a defensive stance. Runa smiling, glad that her husband was back felt her resolve strengthen again and she held her sword at the ready.

“You cannot win against us both Flensa.” Assured Menias. Runa, always caring said “Runa we can get you help, no one has to get hurt.”

“Help…help you say. You both abandoned me!! You left me and ran, took to the road. Found a new favourite…didn’t you.” Malice dripping from every word Flensa spoke.

Then all of a sudden she straightened and grinned. “How are the kids by the way? When was the last time you heard from them hmm…”

Runa’s blood ran cold.

“Last time my contacts got back to me Zhen was somewhere in Brevoy. Wanting to be a great swordsman like dear OLD dad.”

“Please…” Runa whispered, he knee’s weakening.

Flensa continued “And pretty little Mirel. That one has almost as much wanderlust as your ‘adopted angel’ Ileos.”

At the mention of Ileos’ name Menias’ brows furrow in anger and he cannot contain it anymore. “Enough you devil!” He roars as he moves forward with an extended lunge towards his opponent. She sidesteps his thrust and spins, her arm flashing out. Only the glint of moonlight on the blade warns Runa in time to block the throwing dagger with her sword!
Runa moves in with an overhand chop covering Menias’s open flank just as Flensa rolls under the bed for cover. Menias turns and as he uplifts the bed, Flensa runs up the mattress as he lifts it and she goes into a somersault, dagger flashing out. She lands behind him, spinning just too quick and stabbing out at Runa with her sword.
Menias, however manages to parry the thrust away from Runa, realising too late that she wasn’t the target, he was.
He stumbles, seeing the dagger in his chest.

Runa, tears streaming takes up the attack on Flensa. Runa’s skill with a sword is a match for any guardsman, but against a trained swordsman she could only carry on the fight for so long as she wasn’t as devoted to the craft as her husband was, nor her current enemy. Flansa deftly avoided each strike, mocking her before launching her own attacks against Runa. The attacks were fast and calculated. Tiny cuts meant to weaken her. Runa fought on till her hands grew weak and the sword slipped from her hands. She crumbled to the floor.

Flensa snorted a half laugh and walked over to Menias and looked down at him with a curious mockery. “To think I loved you once.” she said matter-of-factly before pulling the dagger out forcefully from his chest.

PLEASE! DON’T KILL HIM!!” Runa pleaded

“Shut. Your. Mouth. Roonah…
“Or I’ll take your tongue and throw it to the rats.”

Turning, Flensa walks towards the open door, casually wiping her blades on the bed sheets she picks up off the floor before throwing them down again.

Runa, gathering what strength she has left drags herself to Menias and uses some of the bed sheets to top his bleeding.
Looking up she see’s Flensa as she disappears into the darkness. Flensa’s voice echoes back…

“I hope he doesn’t die. Truly, I want to see his face when he hears that his children are all dead.”

“Adopted or not.”

End epilogue 2

Epilogue 1.
The Blood of Siblings

Nightfall. I quiet pond. The reflection of the stars above Golarion shine upon its trembling surface as creatures untamed undulate below.
Some bushes beside the pond part and a shadow cloaked figure moves into sight beside the pond.
Waving their hand across the pond, releasing the energy and components needed for the potent spell to take effect.
“I have to see… Show me mine enemy… Lest death already taken from me.”
“Not that lucky I hope.” The figure chuckles. At that moment the pond trembles as if it were about to erupt. The land however is still save for a light night breeze.
Then suddenly the pond it still as if made of glass and a subtle glow emanating from below and a vision appears across its surface.
The shadowed figure not eerily revealed as she leans over the glasslike water. Horns reaching behind her and A grin willed with malice and madness spreads across her face as the leans over to see what is unfolding in this scene before her.
In the image across the water a group of people waist deep in fetid water battle serpentine creatures amongst the shelves of what appear to be something akin to a library or storeroom.
The shadowy watcher cackles and claps her hands together in glee and excitement. And just as quickly she stops and yells with rage "No NONONONONO NOOOO!!
Growling under her breath she watches a little longer.
“So. Making friends are we. They can’t stop destiny. Besides, you’re not the only one who has friends…” As she turns and the shadows around her shuffle and move and large shapes move into view all around the pond at her call.
Looking down at the image in the pond as it slowly fades, signaling the end of the spell she adds… “See you soon…”
As it goes dark except for the glow of her eyes.

The Hangman's Noose


After a very long night, the PC’s, managed to survive the haunted courthouse in Beldrins Bluff in Absalom and with luck and no small skill manged to discern the culprits in the wrongful hanging of the dead exicutioner – Jarbin Mord and the killer of his slain wife and child.
And by doing so set their vengeful souls at ease and end the haunting of the courthouse. And in the process made an ally in Sir Rekkart Cole, Paladin of Iomedae.

After battling undead the likes of Zombies, Shadows, Gutdragging Lurchers, poltergeists, a ghoul-stirge, a nasty Croaker, as well as giant centipedes, giant leeches and a deadly pack of animated toys, what does the world hold in store next for this unlikely band of allies?



Tales of Gorm
If you can't join them...eat them

Gorm Corpse-Reaver
Gorm hunkered down on his creaking bench, slowly sipping the mead out of the barrel. The tavern had gone through all of the stages that he had come to expect:
The slow decrease in volume followed by a last wail of a fiddle, as he stooped through the door frame, the sun outlining his 7’6" half-orge stature…he was big even for a full ogre.
The shocked silence and a sea of open mouths…as he found the strongest bench to sit on and as he ordered a barrel of whatever rotgut was the cheapest.
The bards and minstrels coaxing their wailing pipes to a semblance of a tune…as the crowd would acclimatize to his presence.
The whispered jokes about “What happens when you cross an ogre with x”…that would turn to open laughter as if he could no longer hear.
Finally…the one man, dared by his drunk friends or unsatisfied mistress would approach…

“Evening friend…” said the burly smith, looking up at the yellowed and cracked tusks of the scowling half-ogre. “In my day, i wrestled a bull to the ground with naught but…”
The man’s monologue faded to a dull noise as Gorm took a longer chug of ale, every swallow of the golden liquid dulling more of the memories of the recent battle. His company had not fared well, and both sides had suffered major casualties. Such was the life of a sell-sword, but he had no complaints about the pay. Far better than spilling blood in an arena. The marching and maneuvers had not suited him…he doubted he’d hire himself out as a mercenary again.

Holding onto the barrel in one gnarled hand, Gorm stood up, his helm scoring marks along the wooden ceiling. Casually, he leaned forward, picking up the “burly” man by his leather apron with his other hand. Yellow orbs focused on the farmer’s red face, now level with his own. One of the man’s sandals clattered to the floor, and he looked ready to faint.
“Little human…you assume that I care for what you do with a bull, just like you assume that I intended to spend gold on food…when I could…”
Gorm snapped his tusked jaw with enough force to make a dull sound echo around the open and very silent tavern. A woman moaned in terror, and the farmer’s face drained, and his eyes rolled back.
Gorm licked his tusks slowly, turning to the main room. As one, the silence broke, screams and breaking glass preceding the stampede of merchants and farmers streaming through doors and windows opposite to where he sat.
He waited for the room to empty before setting the unconscious farmer in a chair next to his bench. He patted him on his head, and then he drained the rest of the barrel.
Gorm chuckled to himself absentmindedly. It was time to move on…everyone would be back with pitchforks soon enough…For now his dead comrades were silenced by the liquor, and he needed to find a place to nurse his wounds.

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