Dark Sun: The Karsto Campaigns

E19: Leather Strip

Headhunting in the 'Headhunter's occupation city.

"Ledopolus. The last true dwarven cities that remain on Athas. The South and North counterparts each hold their own rich history and ties to the great island of Ledo. Sadly, most of these dwarves have forgotten their culture and even their own written language. South and North Ledopolus both prop up their hollow respective 'king' and 'queen' as fading placeholders for a withering foothold in their dying civilization. Trade houses were not always as pronounced there as the occupiers would have you believe - certainly the trade initially helped the settlements, but now the merchants have allowed the Praetors of Balic and strategically-placed Judaga of Gulg a way in to strongarm the old dwarven monarchs.

I feel it's only a matter of time now before the dwarven people discover that their love for the hierarchy is misplaced and all of their efforts to bring relevance to their homeland are merely stepping stones for their non-native occupants to bring wealth to their precious Sorcerer-king-or-queen's city. Their great bridge-in-progress - a sign of commitment, pride, and love for craft - will become a heavily taxed shortcut for merchants who wish to cross the Estuary. The templars already enforce a strict working schedule for the natives. The people will realize, when the new laws and taxes weigh down like the sun and the working class slowly become slaves...but by that time it will be too late, and virtually no dwarves on Athas will have an authentic home any longer."

10th of Mist, Year of Priest’s Defiance

The PCs sail to North Ledopolus to kill Heqar Stonemaw, one half of the great bridge construction’s mastermind. They depart the island of Ledo on Captain Volrouak’s silt schooner, The Grapple.

North Ledopolus

When the PCs arrive, they see a sprawling town of stone, populated by dwarves. From the docks, they witness another half of the great Ledopolus bridge in progress. Many working dwarves line the bridge, heaving, picking, and placing stone.

Gathering Information

The locals seemed to know enough about the construction to tell the PCs where Heqar Stonemaw might be. As the party split, some investigated the marketplace of House Inix. The trade hub was staffed by dwarves and Gulgans, and overseen by several Judaga.

Heqar Stonemaw

When the party realized Heqar’s location, Hanibaal Demontes formulated a way to lead the architect away from the bridge and into Volrouak’s silt schooner. Hanibaal acted as if he were a confidant of Heqar’s brother, Grovak, and told Heqar that a giant raid was approaching under the blanket of a brewing sandstorm. Although hesitant, Heqar left the bridge after a little persuading, and motioned that his workers stay cautioned — by the looks of the skies, a sandstorm was indeed brewing from the west, and a giant raid could completely level their town and people.

Killing the architect

Once inside The Grapple, Heqar very quickly realized he was in danger. Kathaalis restrained the dwarf and — with Hanibaal playing a hands-off bystander — the afidae strangled the dwarf with a strap of leather. Within minutes, the dwarf’s hearty breathing stopped and he collapsed onto the floor, his face and hands painted with a deep shade of violet. Dalamar let out a sigh, but stood in the birthing area as stoic as possible. He has been reading the map found in Veloc’s hoodoo, intent on the breakthrough he had neglected since they found it weeks prior.

“I have eyes they cannot see” ringing in his mind.

The Aftermath

Hanibaal ordered the body be stored in a hidden compartment beneath the ship’s bow. They would then set sail for South Ledopolus to slay the other Stonemaw brother.



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