East Longfall Wetlands

At first I thought it was a psychotropic mushroom induced hallucination. But when I crashed into the hull and it hit back, causing me to once again slip on the jagged rocks and fall headlong into the fetid water, I understood I was on to something real.

I knew at once this is how the treasure hunting witch got her loot and the plans for that log cabin. She must lure swamp dwelling ships to their doom with her siren call. Then, after the ship has run aground, she casts a terrible curse upon them, sneaks aboard and absconds with the loot.

“Well, two can play at that game,” I declared. “Except for the siren call and cursing part. I have yet to train in the dark arts of casting a curse. I can cast an aspersion, but that doesn’t help me here.”

So, I ran up the embankment, and with great speed and agility, leapt from the rock outcropping and landed on the deck like a metal clad birdie on a branch.

After picking myself up from being slightly concussed from crashing into the railing from my somewhat overenthusiastic run, I scanned the area.

The ship was in a terrible state. The deck was rotting away. The wood planks were swollen and buckled. The sails had long since deteriorated. And the masts were a deathtrap to any who might try to have a look around in the crow’s nest.

My inventory of the ship was interrupted as a horde of zombie pirates came out to protect their booty. They seemed to rise up from the very swamp itself and their appearance had both positive and negative connotations.

Clearly, zombies rising up from the swamp is a life threatening hazard and goes into the negative column. However, their presence indicated there was still loot to protect, so if I survived the onslaught, fabulous wealth and riches could be mine. I mentally put that in the positive column.

Before I could start playing a mental game of tic-tac-toe against myself, I was struck a resounding blow. Gathering my senses, I caught up with the battle. Seeking higher ground, I dashed up the rickety ladder to the stern of the ship.

Those boney rapscallions were no match for my ladder climbing skills and I gave them a sound thrashing as they negotiated the crumbling rungs. I was even spiteful enough to step on the hand of the ill-tempered blighter before knocking his skull and the rest of him overboard into the drink.

“Time to walk the plank ya boney bastards!” I said in a fit of pirate fueled enthusiasm that swept over me. I leapt to the lower deck, dealing a crushing blow to the zombie below, shattering a few bones to be sure. His, not mine.

Caught up in the melee, I made a few miscalculated decisions. Wood is the natural enemy of fire, and that nugget of truth escaped me for a moment as the Immolation came out. The deck was an inferno of fire. I then realized my treasure as well as my person were in grave danger. Fire laden zombies scattered about the deck and if something wasn’t done, the ship would go up like a tinderbox and become my final resting place. Further, the treasure would be ruined.

I undid Immolation and beat down the zombie flames with my sword. It worked well and the fire was quelled before any serious damage could occur. I was then able to continue my search for the treasure.

Much to my dismay, the doors to the lower decks were jammed in place and no amount of vicious sword play would make them move. Undaunted, I returned to the land and peeped in through the portholes.

To my sickening heart, the hold was barren. Not a chest, coin, gem or mug of ale could be seen. That scoundrel of a witch had picked it clean.

“She is far more diabolical and sinister than I gave her credit for,” I grumbled. “She must have the encumbrance of a titan to make away with all that loot and leave me nothing. If I hadn’t already looted her secret stash, I would do it again out of spite!”

Amidst cursing my misfortune and plotting revenge against the witch for this injustice, I noted a floating encampment that seemed woefully out of place in the swamp.

“Why have these bandits pitched their tents on the docks?” I had to ask. “This is clearly no place for a fishing holiday. And what is to be made of those people being held in cells? I think something nefarious is afoot. Further investigation is most certainly in order.”

As I plotted a course to the encampment that would keep me out of sight until I was ready to announce my presence with fire and steel, a thought came to me.

“What is a ship doing in a swamp? These waters are not conducive to sailing.”


Huzzah! A pirate ship! Finally, some well earned loot and trinkets will be mine!

More brilliant musings about my adventures in New Britannia

I awoke to a brightly lit, but mist covered swamp. My progress from the night before had been slight and I had only succeeded in making it to the rear entrance of the log cabin. However, there was an interesting discovery to be made.

This was a fortune hunting witch and I had stumbled on her treasure chest full of loot. Most likely taken from the ill-fated souls that she had decoratively turned into wind chimes. It was the height of danger and my curiosity was piqued. Clearly her appearance as a frail, doddering old woman speaking in tongues was merely a ruse for her more lucrative, yet nefarious acts. She was indeed a formidable sorceress and I would need to be careful, lest I be turned into a frog or worse.

But my hopes of looting before making a quiet getaway were dashed as the chest required a key. I cursed the distrusting nature of swamp dwelling people and went inside to see if I could perhaps uncover it’s secret hiding place.

The witch was surprised to see me, and launched in her maniacal rhymes to keep me at bay.

I retraced our conversation over the terrible ordeal I suffered the previous night. I could tell her interest was lacking, but my senseless diatribe was merely a calculated maneuver to surveil my surrounds and scan the contents for a key. None presented itself, which meant the treasure was even more grand than I first suspected.

My hope began to fade and my host was losing patience. But then I caught a glint out of the corner of my eye. Something in the blazing fireplace was trying to gain my attention. It appeared to be a key in the scalding confines of the fire. Reaching in, even with my stalwart gauntlet, could be a costly mistake. I had to formulate another plan to subdue the fire without attracting attention.

Since this witch was keenly aware of the destructive power of a bucket of water, I deduced I would need to create a clever distraction, then make my own water to quell the fire.

With patience exhausted, the witch leveled several threats at me, then darted outside to find a switch. The distraction was at hand and I seized the opportunity to douse the flames of the fire. Having my back to the witch in such a vulnerable position was risky, but to my great satisfaction, a key was clearly visible.

A rather ridiculous place to hide a key, but these witches are a treacherous and untrusting lot. But the deed was done and the rather unsavory key was in my pocket. I threw some new logs onto the smoldering embers to conceal my actions.

Just as the witch reentered, stick in hand and ready to make mischief, I darted past her, leapt off the porch, clambered up the embankment and disappeared into the scrub.

From a concealed hiding place, I waited for the scene to settle. Then, under the cover of darkness, I made my way to the waiting treasure chest. The key was a perfect fit and the contents were mine.

My perusal of the ill-gotten gains was interrupted by a terrible snag. The witch had set up a sentry and a chest mimic had latched onto my backside with shocking ferocity.

The Mimic was a fierce adversary, but steel and fire immobilize wood and I kicked the scrap wood remains into the undergrowth.

Returning to my task, I took stock of the fabulous wealth and riches that awaited me. I suffered a hint of regret at taking her meager coins, but it’s part of the adventurers code to take gold from all found treasure chests. Coins left behind become cursed which ruins the economy for all.

As with so many of my recent treasure hunts, the wealth was meager. Yet, there was a handsome discovery, not one in the form of coins. It was the building specifications for creating my own log cabin. I could certainly make use of that, and quickly stashed it away. With the rest of the contents carefully ensconced within my backpack of holding, I crept away quietly. The witch was none the wiser.

The swamp was still a maze, but the fumes were no longer as potent as they had been on my arrival. I scrambled up the hill, around the trees, skirted past the rocks and kept those fuming spores at bay. I was making fine progress until I collided with a pirate ship run aground.

“Well, this most definitely needs further investigation on my part.”


Well, well, well. What have we here? A treasure chest of some kind? As an adventurer, I’m compelled to open it. All I have to do is uncover the secret location of the key’s hiding place.


Who the duece hides a key in a raging fireplace? That’s utterly daft and shows and incredily lack of forethought. What’s wrong with the old standby of sticking it under a rug? Or leaving it on a table in plain sight?

More brilliant musings about my adventures in New Britannia

After leaving Aerie, I made a directional miscalculation and instead of boarding the ferry to Etceter, I followed the trail that lead to East Longfall Wetlands. While not a grievous turn of events unto itself, it did place me in a swamp where I suffered at the spores of the toxic fungi. At least I believe them to be fungi, my memory, as well as my vision, is a dash blurry.

I have resisted several types of poisons in my travels, but stumbling into that grove was a costly mistake and I was saturated to the point of collapse. Not sure of my direction, I made a  hasty retreat which in reality plunged me further into the swamp. I collapsed in a ramshackle thug encampment. Which one of us was more surprised at my arrival is a matter of debate. I hoped their cries of exclamation were out of need to render me aid.

I declared I would be on my way once I was able to splash a bit of water on my face to wash away the poison. I think they misunderstood my needs as I was soon fully immersed in some rather brackish and foul smelling water.

“I appreciate your attempt, but your methods are a dash on the excessive side!” I cried out in between dunkings. “I am not in need of a full body cleansing at the moment!”

My vision and consciousness were beginning to fade when a Caiman came to my rescue. By the wild thrashing in the water, he clearly understood the nature of my mistreatment and caused the thugs to scatter. This allowed me to regain my senses and give those lads a stern talking to.

My chidings fell on deaf ears as the Caiman unleashed his fury. Quite outnumbered, the poor beast was soon riddled with arrows and I leapt to avenge this ill treatment.

With retribution dealt, I feel it only fitting to field dress the Caiman so that I can honor his sacrifice by turning him into a delightful pair of boots. That will take place upon my return to the Hollow.

As my vision returned, it was time to remove myself from this gaseous swamp. Mist and fumes shrouded the area, making my navigational options limited.

It was by good fortune that I found myself upon the doorstep of what I assumed to be a kindly, log cabin dwelling caregiver who has taken up residence in the area. Perhaps she lost her way many years ago and simply cut down the enormous tree she now called home. An even more impressive feat as there were no tools in the vicinity.

The myriad of bones strung up on a line gave me a sense of dread. I then understood that these must be the heads of all the swamp enemies she had slain and they were displayed as a warning to others. That was a good tactic.

“Good evening!” I declared, letting her know I was not some sort of swamp creature intent on doing her harm. “Since you are a native to these parts, perhaps you would be good enough to point me in the direction of the exit. I have lost my way and those pesky spores have rendered me a little light in the head. Not to mention, you have a rather unfortunate thug problem just outside your door.”

“If you don’t want to get beat, you need to retreat!”

Her reply left me at a loss. At first I thought it might be a strange form of greeting.

“No my dear lady, I mean you no harm! And I don’t intend to trespass upon your time any more than necessary. Do you happen to know the way back to Aerie?”

“Don’t delay, you must go away!”

“I am just as eager to be on my way as you are to see me go. But first, I need a bit of assistance is locating the direction in which I should travel. Perhaps if you could hold off speaking in rhymes for just a moment, we both might get what we want out of this encounter.”

“Be off with you. Go away, shoo shoo!”

“Madam, I am more than eager to oblige. But please, in the name of the Oracle, point the way!”

“If you don’t want to be beat, you need to retreat!” she echoed again.

Then I was struck by the nature of her furnishings. The spartan furniture, the mysterious bottles, the usual aroma. This cabin had all the trappings of a witches hut. I clenched at the understanding.

Trying to be friendly, I made light conversation as to the means by which she ended up in this area and why she chose to stay in such a toxic environment.

She reciprocated not a jot and before she unleashed some form of deadly curse upon my personage as retribution for my intrusion, I felt it best to move on. Still in a fragile state, I took my leave, stumbled down the stairs and continued on my way.

My decision making paradigm was in jeopardy and I only made it a few feet before I lost my footing on some dangerously hard rocks, crashed into what I assume was her home or something else pretending to be a large tree and came to rest in a pool of mud. It seemed Fate wanted me to lie down and gather my senses, so who was I to argue?


Huzzah! Salvation is at hand. I admire the craftsmanship of this domicile, but question the choice of location. You do realize you’re in harm’s way of not only poisonous gas, but a barrage of ill-tempered thugs?

I say, what is it you have dangling on the porch?

More brilliant musings about my adventures in New Britannia

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