Masters of Illuria

Secret of the ARPA Ruins, Part 2
Divide and Conquer


Aonara, Rick and Kalas entered the ruins and learned the glow was due to the dwarven team from the Ironshod Mercenaries. Durgin Mars had been sent with a small group to complete a construction contract for a client. Part of this involved specialized enchantments. They needed powerful magic of a type that had only been found in and around the gate Aonara sealed some time before.

Aonara met with Durgin and discussed what they could. Durgin could not reveal the identity of his employer or the nature of the contract. But when offered a better, more efficient way to charge their constructions, Durgin agreed. But that was when Aonara learned that the dwarves, a people renowned for their record keeping, had lost the knowledge of how to safely tap a ley line for magical energy. Horrified, Aonara set to work, offering to instruct Durgin and any apprentice of his choosing to re-learn this lost knowledge.

Meanwhile, Rick – as any Rust Harvester would – searched the ruins for any parts, items or components that they could use in their efforts to free the kidnapped cyphermonks from their temple outside the ruins of Threshold. Most of his searching uncovered a small supply of the rare Old World cerametal alloy, it also uncovered a forgotten experiment and weathered tracks of a Titan that had attacked the ARPA ruins.

The Titan, a two story tall walking tank, had rampaged through the location, and roamed further into the Trollwood. What tracks remained after five hundred years suggested it traveled north to the Ice Needle Spires mountains.

As for the forgotten experiment, it had been created by the famous inventor, Dr. Peter DuMosque. Notes suggested it had been used against the Dark Horde and the KILLJOY at the end of the Final War as a means to bypass the magical wards defending the KILLJOY. Once used, the device had not been turned on again.

Leaving the experiment to be studied later, Rick set out after the Titan in hopes that the device – or some part – could be salvaged.

Secret of the ARPA Ruins


The Battle for Ethana was over and the mana drain devices dismantled. But no one was willing to celebrate yet. Ethana was still decimated. Gathering anyone able enough, Idris Griderstalk began the hard task of planning how to rebuild the town. This time Ethana would be better able to defend against threats that might return.

Rick, Aonara and Kalas leave the circuit components with the cyphermonks Tomas and Alarin, the rest of the device components they salvage for themselves. To combat the threat of the jailer, the trio plans to free the cyphermonks from their temple.

Before they try, they head for the ARPA ruins north of the Old Highland Road. The same ruins where Aonara sealed the ancient gate to the Dark Horde prison. They hope to salvage some technology from the old military ruins. How much use they will get from five-hundred-year-old technology remains to be seen. Aonara knows the ARPA ruins had been set up to study the gate and devise means to combat the Dark Horde. That research may still be there.

But as they travel close to the ruins, they realize that the ARPA location might have new owners. Tendrils of smoke curl up from the thick canopy of the northern Trollway forest during the day. At night, a purple-green aura hovers above the trees. In the distance, there is the sound of forgefires working non-stop.

Wrath of the Jailer


After capturing the synthroid bounty hunter, Kalas, he delivered a dire warning: The Jailer was done with Aonara and Rick’s interference, and would enact retribution starting with the town of Ethana.

With the speed of a master craftsman, Rick re-coded the tech-golems and released them to hunt their creator. But that left little time to contact the Marshal’s Guild to collect Kalas. Taking the synthroid along, Rick and Aonara hurry to Ethana as fast as wagon and cungha lizard could move.

They arrive to find the town in ruins. Idris Griderstalk, the town druid, greets them as they arrive. From her they learn many townsfolk are wounded, several people are missing. Including the marshal, Elias Evenstar. Idris describes horrific creatures with red scaly skin. They were directed by a large human in Old World armor. Armor bearing the symbol of the Dark Horde.

But before she can describe more, the air tears open with a green flash of energy in the town square! Through the dome of energy, twisted creates with red scaly skin and black claws leap through and attack!

Double Trouble


In the three weeks since Boughedge, stories have filtered down the Old Highland Road trade route of strange events far to the west. All the talk is about glowing rocks, mutated creatures, and other odd sights near where the Star Fall came to ground a month ago.

Meanwhile, trade wagons have suffered attacks while on the Old Highland Road south of the ARPA ruins. Concerned for the trade route, Elias Galford of the Galford Merchant’s Guild hires Richard “Rick” Van Helsing to look into the matter. Galford wants to know if it is more trouble with the Old World Sentry hound packs, or thieves.

While to the Southeast, Idris Griderstalk has asked Aonara for help with a curious find. Identify the source of a strange new plant growing along the South side of the Old Highland Road. Plants, that when cut, dissolve into a dusty smoke, before fading from view. Plants that are not connected to the “green” of Druidic influence.

Hounds of the Huntmaster


Two weeks later, after the incident at the Elemental Gate and the ARPA Ruins, a strange light shot across the evening sky. It plowed through the clouds, turning them a green-purple hue, before vanishing beyond the trees with a dull rumble of thunder.

Explorers, adventurers, bounty hunters, and more have set out on occasional expeditions looking for the ‘Star Fall’ as its been called. Some returned with strange tales of glowing lights, ghosts, and other mind-bending sights. In other cases, the expedition did not return at all.

But, along the Old Highland Road and Blackstone Road trade route, rumors have been circulating. Caravans have been greeted by mysterious travelers who join them for a time, only to leave in the middle of nowhere and vanish. Large packs of Old World Sentry Hounds have become common. And in the village of Boughedge, people have started vanishing without a trace.

Marshal Elias Evenstar has been sent by the Council of Peers in Shildamere City to round up able-bodied help to look into the last rumor, as Boughedge is along the trading route between Tavil, Ethana and Shildamere City.

The Lost Hunt


A monstrous creature attacking the elven settlement of Ethana turns out to be one of the members of a lost hunting party from seven years ago!

With help of the rescued hunter, Graeme must track down this ancient gate the hunting party found and seal off whatever dangers are escaping into Illuria!


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