Session Notes: Tidwater rock

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Session Notes: Tidwater rock Empty Session Notes: Tidwater rock

Post by Tasslon on Sun Jan 07, 2018 10:55 am

Session notes: 6/4/17.
When the squibbing of the we s’ ship is finally complete, Captain Pegsworthy gave this information. It refers to a small castle called Tidewater Rock that commands a small, protected harbor on a remote island south of Motaku Isle. It is said that anyone who can claim Tidewater Rock as her own will have good luck, as the castle makes a strategic watch point from which one can strike the nearby shipping lanes. Most Free Captains have better things to do than pursue old wives’ tales, but a new pirate captain would surely find a boost to her reputation were she able to claim that she had “cracked the Rock.”

Session notes: 6/11/17.
We see a fog. After a few days of being caused by fog, we are now close to the Tidewater Rock. We entered combat. We recall tales of the ghost ship Deathknell, captained by the terrible Whalebone Pilk, who sails the Fever Sea in search of sailors to feed his ever-hungry crew and fuel his ghostly ship. Rumors recalls that the Deathknell always stalks its prey for 2 nights before dragging them down into a watery hell on the third. Once again, no trace can be found of the ship. The Deathknell attacks our ship on the third night. We attempted to flee but never got three-quarters of a mile ahead of the ghost ship, its red lamp disappears in the gloom. The Deathknell grappling hooks come singing over to grapple the two ships together. The Deathknell simply closes with them from astern, firing once with the great whaling ballista mounted on its bow before closing for boarding.

Ash is under control of the sword. We tried to free him but no one could remove the sword. It appears that this Captain Pilk is a relative of Ash. After we killed some skeleton and zombies the Captain and Ash returned to Pilk’s ship and fled. We are running a white flag to speak with the current owner of the Rock is Lady Agasta Smythee, widow of the late Iron Bert.

Session notes: 7/16/17.
Part Three: The Lady of the Rock

When a Free Captain named Magna Stormeyes discovered the natural harbor on Windward Isle over 2 centuries ago, she immediately recognized that it would make the perfect haven from which to launch a pirate fleet. Starting with just one ship and a small encampment on Windward’s harbor, she began to ply the trade of piracy. With the plunder from her initial hauls, she set about building a keep, which she called Tidewater Rock. From the vantage point atop the Rock, she found she could pick out particularly ripe targets while receiving ample of warning of hostile ships approaching.

Over time, Stormeyes’ successes enabled her to build a sizeable fleet, as well as more strongholds on several different islands. She became the scourge of the southern sea lanes and eventually claimed the Hurricane Crown as her own. Shortly after becoming the Hurricane King and relocating to Port Peril, she was assassinated by rival Free Captains. Stormeyes’ burgeoning fleet fell apart among its squabbling captains. Gerta Frome, first mate of Stormeyes’ flagship, the Cocksure, seized control of the Rock.

Within only a few years, Frome became a powerful Free Captain herself, and the legend of Tidewater Rock as both a powerful good luck talisman and an impregnable bastion was born. Over the many years since, control of Tidewater Rock has passed from hand to hand, and its strategic location and practical defensibility have enabled its owners to enrich themselves substantially. With the rebellion of Sargava and its ostensible alliance with the Free Captains, Tidewater Rock became of less strategic importance, and its owners came to be of less prominence, but the age-old axiom of “Good fortune and sure sail await what one can crack the Tidewater Rock” has stood the test of time among the pirates of the Shackles and is oft-quoted—if seldom heeded even today.

The most recent lord of Tidewater Rock was Bertram Smythee, captain of the Vale and three other brigs. Like his predecessors, he held Tidewater Rock as his seat, but controlled a few
other small castles on surrounding islands as well. Over a decade ago, “Iron Bert” Smythee went to sea with his small fleet in a feud with Free Captain Carola Antiochus and was never seen again. Word came back that Antiochus had lured Smythee into the edges of the Eye of Abendego and ambushed him with the help of a previously unknown ally one Barnabas Harrigan and that Smythee’s fleet was cut to pieces between the enemy fleets. Though Captain Smythee managed to sink Antiochus’s Pergador, he was last seen on the deck of the crippled and sinking Vale at the mercy of the Eye’s hurricane winds.

Session notes: 7/16/17.
Captain Harrigan claimed the remainder of Antiochus’s fleet and took control of several of Smythee’s undefended castles. He tried to take the Tidewater Rock as well, only to discover that Smythee’s able widow had taken charge of its defenses. She managed to fend off his attack with such alacrity that Harrigan decided to leave the widow to rot in her tower. Although Tidewater Rock remains a secure base and harbor, it does not command the reputation it once did.
The current owner of the Rock is Agasta Smythee, widow of the late Iron Bert. Though Lady Smythee is a competent and formidable figure, without any of her late husband’s ships or network of castles, the Lady of the Rock has fallen upon hard times. Lady Smythee’s forces
have been reduced to a small body of loyal guards and a few family retainers whom she employs to eke out a living. The Rock still commands some treasures—its favorable location, its security, and the late captain’s fabled iron shirt from which he gained his nickname—but it is otherwise remote and at the mercy of what the sea chooses to throw upon its shores. Having heard the legend of Tidewater Rock when their ship was rechristened at Rickety’s Squibs. Tidewater Rock as Windward Isle, the westernmost island in a small archipelago south of Motaku Isle. Windward Isle lies just over 100 miles west of Rickety’s Squibs, though it could be much farther from (or much closer to) the we s, depending on their exact location in the Fever Sea when they decide to go to Tidewater Rock.

Inhabitants of Tidewater Rock

Agas ta Smythee, Lady of the Rock Widow of Iron Bert Smythee, Lady Agasta is of legitimately noble birth, albeit a far-sprung offshoot of a long-exiled Galtan family. She was once a rare beauty, but now in her middle years she has filled out her big-boned frame into a stocky matron, though she remains a handsome, if rough-edged, woman. She maintains a commanding presence and rules Tidewater Rock like a countess on a Galtan estate, not afraid to give a misbehaving servant or unruly guest the rough side of her tongue. Female middle-aged human aristocrat 4/warrior 3 N Medium humanoid (human).

Royster McCleagh, Sergeant-at-Arms An aged soldier and longtime retainer of the Smythees, Royster is secretly ashamed that he was not with Captain Smythee on his last fateful expedition. He is a gruff old campaigner with a handlebar moustache and salt and pepper hair, and is rarely seen without his arms and armor. He maintains discipline and training among his small corps of troops even on this backwater island ale middle-aged human fighter 6 LN Medium humanoid (human).


Eight soldiers, all loyal hirelings under the command of Lady Smythee, make
up Tidewater Rock’s tiny garrison. Most are the children or relatives of members of Captain Smythee’s crews who were too young to join the expedition. Dewater

Session notes: 7/16/17.


Only four loyal retainers remain in service to Lady Smythee.

Albers and Birney Siggs (N human experts 3): This couple are in their seventies and were Captain Smythee’s first retainers. Though they both get around a bit more slowly these days, they do their utmost to maintain the decorum and dignity of Lady Smythee’s household. They are concerned about their grandson, Mardus, whose parents went to sea with Captain Smythee and never returned. They feel he needs a role model in his life who is a bit younger than gruff old Sergeant McCleagh, and would welcome a of noble spirit who could provide that role.

Clew (N male human commoner 1): Clew is a simpleton in his twenties who serves as a scullion in the keep. Captain Smythee rescued him from a cruel pirate captain and brought him back to the Rock. The rest of the castle’s occupants have adopted him as a foster son and are fiercely protective of him.

Mardus Siggs (N male human commoner 1/expert 1): Mardus is the teenaged grandson of Albers and Birney and serves as the herder for Lady Smythee’s small flock of goats. He longs to follow in his father’s footsteps and go to sea, and would eagerly accept a position of cabin boy
or midshipman aboard the we s’ ship if given the chance.

Session notes: 7/16/17.

Windward Isle

Windward Isle is 2 miles long by 1-mile wide and is almost surrounded by rough shingle and gravel beaches. Its central elevation never rises above 100 feet, so the tower of
Tidewater Rock commands a good view of almost the entire island. Its soil is rocky and barren, with thin salt grasses, scrub trees, and a few boggy areas where peat is collected. Fauna consists of nothing larger than small serpents and mice. The Lady of the Rock maintains a few small areas of cultivated land where roots, grains, and vegetables are raised to supply the castle, and an orange grove grows near the lagoon. A small hutch inland from the anchorage provides shelter for the goatherd Mardus Siggs to watch over the herd of seven goats that call Windward Isle home during the day. In addition, two small springs (one hidden in a rock cistern) provide fresh water for the island’s inhabitants. The harbor of Windward Isle is a quarter-mile-wide channel that runs just south of Tidewater Rock and ends in a lagoon large and deep enough to safely hold three seagoing ships. The water in the channel and lagoon never drops below 20 feet deep at low tide, so ships in the anchorage are in no danger of running aground, and are protected from the worst of the storm surges when monsoons blow in off the Fever Sea. The keep of Tidewater Rock sits right on the lagoon’s edge, where the water ranges from knee deep to neck deep,
with powerful ebb tides and rip currents that can sweep invaders out to sea. Consult the table above to determine the depth of the water and the DC of Acrobatics or Swim checks (depending on depth) to avoid being swept 1d4×10 feet out to sea each round.

Tidewater Rock

Tidewater Rock is a fortified tower house over 70 feet tall, built upon the same stone shingle that makes up the western shore of Windward Isle. The tower house is composed of
reinforced masonry walls atop a 10-foot-high stone base filled with packed dirt. A stone stair rises 10 feet to the heavy front door, and always but the greatest ebb of low tide, the shingle below the castle is a swirling morass of tide water. At high tide, the waves lap at the very lip of the door stoop, making assailing the castle virtually impossible. Interior floors are built of heavy oak beams 2 feet thick, and the tower roof is sheathed in lead tiles. Ceilings are 12 feet high. Doors are of strong wood but only a few have locks (Disable Device DC 25). All the windows except one (in area B11) are narrow arrow slits, some of which are set into deep alcoves providing a broad shelf area that can be used for seating or storage. Lighting is provided by these
arrow slits during the day and thick tallow candles in wall sconces at night. The entire castle has a feeling of cramped security but still manages to convey a sense of comfort and
safety for those who reside there.

Session notes: 7/16/17.
Time of day Water Depth Acrobatics DC Swim DC
12 midnight–2 a.m. 6 ft. 15 10
2 a.m.–4 a.m. 9 ft. — 15
4 a.m.–6 a.m. 6 ft. 15 10
6 a.m.–8 a.m. 3 ft. 5 —
8 a.m.–10 a.m. 0 ft. — —
10 a.m.–12 noon 3 ft. 5 —
12 noon–2 p.m. 6 ft. 15 10
2 p.m.–4 p.m. 9 ft. — 15
4 p.m.–6 p.m. 6 ft. 15 10
6 p.m.–8 p.m. 3 ft. 5 —
8 p.m.–10 p.m. 0 ft. — —
10 p.m.–12 midnight 3 ft. 5 —
Tidewater Rock
1 square = 5 feet
B11 B12
First Floor
Second Floor
Third Floor
Fourth Floor

Session notes: 7/16/17.
Tidewater Rock

B1. Tower Entrance: The door to the tower is kept locked
and barred (hardness 5, hp 20, Break DC 30), and a guard
in area B3 carries the key. The chamber beyond is floored
with the dirt filling the tower’s base and is used to store
assorted supplies, spare timber, kegs of nails and tar, spare
sailcloth, fishing lines and nets, lengths of heavy rope,
and unused furniture. A rowboat hangs from the rafters.
Alcoves in the walls and below the arrow slit hold more
delicate items such as tinderboxes, tallow candles, and
chipped crockery. A side alcove holds a staggered wooden
ladder that accesses the second floor (area B2). The ladder
is unusual in that its rungs alternate from side to side
so that someone not paying attention can easily lose his
footing and fall (DC 12 Acrobatics check to climb if taking
less than a full-round action).

B2. Defensive Corridor: This corridor runs along the
south wall of the tower and provides access to three arrows
slits overlooking the shingle. The guard from area B3
moves here whenever a ship is spotted approaching the
island. A chest at one end holds 150 crossbow bolts, and a
tarnished silver ewer (worth 35 gp) holding drinking water
sits on a table at the other end.

B3. Guardroom: A few chairs and a table compose the
furnishings in this room. A guard is always on duty here,
and carries the key to the door at area B1.

B4. Bunkroom: Narrow plank bunks are crammed into
the room along with a few stools and an old sea chest.
Four of the guards are quartered here in rotating shifts,
and Royster McCleagh bunks here when not sharing
Lady Smythee’s quarters. The sea chest holds the guards’
collected pay, a total of 85 gp.

B5. Workshop: A small forge has been set up beneath
the arrow slit, and worktables around the room are arrayed
with tools for ironwork as well as carpentry and general
repairs. A few wood planks are stacked against one wall,
and a crate holds brass nails. Mardus the goatherd beds
down beneath one of the tables here at night.

Session notes: 7/16/17.
Tidewater Rock

B6. Defensive Stair: This cramped stair spirals steeply
up to the third and fourth floors (areas B7 and B11) and
serves as a choke point for invaders. A large masonry jars
in the corner contains alchemist’s fire that can be thrown
from the arrow slit and affects a 10-foot-radius area.

B7. Privy: A stone privy has been built into an alcove on the
stair landing. A clay pitcher of water rests on the floor beside
it to wash any wastes down the pipe and out into the surf.

B8. Kitchen: A small fire pit has been built into the alcove
below the arrow slit. A stack of driftwood rests nearby,
while a kettle dangles from an iron brace above it. A table,
chopping block, barrels of pickled vegetables, and alcoves
holding dry goods fill out the rest of the room. Birney Siggs
is usually cooking here during the day, and the scullion
Clew beds down atop bags of grain in one of the alcoves.

B9. Water Stores: The door to this room is always
locked, and Albers Siggs carries the key. Fresh water is
one of the most precious commodities on the island, and
a dozen large barrels are always kept filled here in case of
siege or fire. Several hogsheads of ale and rum are likewise
stored here.

B10. Retainers’ Quarters: At night, Albers and Birney
Siggs retire to this chamber with its simple bed, chest, table,
and chair. The couples’ combined saving of 310 gp, mostly
in silver and copper coins, is hidden in the chest beneath a
false bottom (DC 19 Perception check to discover).

B11. Feast Hall: A long oaken table that can seat up to 10 fills this room, over which hangs a heavy iron chandelier. An arrow slit alcove serves as a sideboard and generally
holds a tapped keg of ale for meal times and off-duty guards. A wide window—the only true window in the castle—overlooks the picturesque harbor and admits a soft southerly breeze, but has sturdy oak shutters that can be barred from within. A door to the north opens on stairs
leading up to the battlements (area B13). To the east, a locked door leads to area B12, its key held by Lady Smythee herself. Albers Siggs can usually be found here during the
day, serving as the lady’s chamberlain. A small end table has a secret drawer (DC 18 Perception check to find) where Royster keeps his savings, consisting of 42 pp and a small
jadeite Garundi idol (worth 350 gp).

Session notes: 7/16/17.
Tidewater Rock

B12. Master Apartment: This is the most spacious room
in the castle and holds the only true fireplace, a peat burning
affair that is rarely lit in these tropical climes. A
comfortable but sagging couch stands before the fireplace,
along with a small writing table and pair of chairs. An old
sea chest stands before an elegant bed, next to an antique
armor stand. The armor stand holds Iron Bert Smythee’s
famed “iron shirt,” a buccaneer’s breastplate (Advanced Player’s
Guide 284), which Captain Smythee unfortunately forgot to
don in his haste to depart on his last voyage. The sea chest
holds the last of Agasta Smythee’s fortune hidden beneath
her fine, but well-worn, clothing: a farglass (see page 56),
four potions of water breathing, and three additional potions
(determine randomly or choose as appropriate).

B13. Battlements: Two guards are always on duty upon
this parapet, day or night. The tower chimney rises 10 feet
above the walkway, and the peak of the lead-shingled roof
rises to a height of 7 feet. Two light ballistae, each with
a barrel of 15 bolts nearby, have been set in turrets at the
southern corners, overlooking the lagoon. The drop from
the battlements to the ground below is 70 feet. On a clear
day, a lookout with a good spyglass can see for miles out to
sea from here.

Session notes: 7/16/17.
Event 15: Cracking the Rock (CR varies)

This event occurs the first time we travel to Windward Isle and try to “crack” Tidewater Rock. When we first approach the island, read or paraphrase the following description. tower rises like a solid block from the sea at the edge of this island. The pounding surf rolls around its base and partially covers the steps that lead up to its front gate. A few arrow slits pierce its walls here and there, and a single shuttered window opens high upon the face of the fortress. A roof of metal shingles rises from its battlements where sentries keep lookout
and siege weapons stand ready on corner turrets.

The Lady agreement, Marriage name only, will have asses to the captain, Captain Harrigan head. If we speak of parley, trade, or other peaceful intentions, they can change her attitude to friendly. If we mention being enemies of Barnabas Harrigan, they receive a +4 bonus on their Diplomacy checks. If we succeed in making Lady Smythee friendly, she invites them to dinner in Tidewater Rock.

Brennon is marring, Lady Smythee of Tidewater Rock.

I now removing all clothing that covers my scales. I grow bronze scaled wings, and l hover 5 feet. My hands, arms, chest are covered with bronze scales. With the death of my dragon grandfather, I’m no longer afraid to hide my scales. With the death of my, on session 8/14/2016, I learned about the first bloodline discovered. I was told that Adallon is my grandfather. Adallon was killed by an old blue dragon appeared, Cearlean. Adallon body turned into a gem like form preserving the body. Outside of the Rickety’s Squibs town. Grandmother of father’s side is dead. Update she is recently dead. She is Sabin Adabonston.

My new ability is. I now removing all clothing that covers my scales. I grow bronze scaled wings, and l hover 5 feet. The 1st level.

New traits possible, island, 1 notch in this bonus, proficient is siege weapons.

Alliance: Lady Smythee. Under Shackles Law, two parties can agree to a mutually beneficial marriage relationship for a set period. During that time, each party enjoys the full benefits of marriage to his or her spouse and concomitant resources. Once the agreed-upon time is up, however, either party can choose to divorce simply by stating as much, and each party returns amicably to his or her own holdings with no further strings attached. This was a particularly beneficial arrangement in the turbulent politics of the Shackles, as a Free Captain could marry a rival captain for a set period, thus ensuring that her rival’s fleet would not act against her own. If love developed under such an arrangement, the marriage could continue indefinitely if both parties agreed to it.

Session notes: 7/16/17.
If the we in question is agreeable to such a proposal, Lady Smythee promises to marry the we “for one year certain,” with the future of the arrangement beyond that time to be
determined later. The benefit of the we in this arrangement is lordship of Tidewater Rock and access to its resources and strategic position for that time. In addition, Lady Smythee is nothing if not traditional, and gives her new spouse a dowry upon their marriage her farglass and her late husband’s “iron shirt” (see area 12)—though in the event of a divorce, she expects them back, of course. Sergeant McCleagh has his own feelings for the Lady of the Rock, but he is nothing if not loyal, and reluctantly accepts the marriage arrangement. He is not above giving the we hard look as the masters of the Rock retire to their apartment of an evening, however. If we have not yet amassed enough Infamy to elicit an offer of marriage from Lady Smythee, she hints that
she might be willing to agree to an alliance once they have made more of a name for themselves. In this case, we can return to Tidewater Rock once they have reached a high enough Infamy threshold, and thereby secure an alliance with the Lady of the Rock.

Tidewater Rock

Treasure: If we loot Tidewater Rock, they can collect only 2 points of plunder, due to the keep’s current financial state.

Development: Anyone using Lady Smythee’s farglass (see area B12) to watch the shipping lanes can see passing targets of opportunity (such as those described in Event 7). If we attack such a ship, the we s’ pilot gains a +2 bonus on initiative checks for any ship-to-ship combat that occurs due to their early knowledge of the other vessel’s position, clairaudience and clairvoyance, magically buccaneers plate armor, underwater water, 4 potions comprehend languages, eagle splendor, remove disease.

Session notes: 7/23/17.
We are having trouble with the Ed’s baby. She is after only 2 months, is having trouble bleeding out. They are c section on the baby. The child is a boy named, Sam Adams. The baby is healthy. The mother died. Ed’s wife is buried on our island.
Session notes: 7/30/17 – battle continued 8/27/17.
Sahuagin is preparing to strike Tidewater Rock on the very night that the PCs have returned. Shortly before nightfall, when the tide has ebbed, the last of the castle inhabitants are returning from their routine chores (filling water barrels, cutting peat, and the like) so that the door can be shut for the night. As the door is opened for the approaching group, eight sahuagin burst from the surf 30 feet away and charge for the door. They ignore the workers and any guards in order to get inside the castle. The PCs may be serving as guards for the incoming group or waiting within the castle. The garrison’s guards assist the battle. The Thresher: Captain Isabella Locke goes with the boats, leaving her first mate Knuckles Grype in command of the ship. It takes the longboats 5 to quietly row to the front of the castle. If the Thresher was not previously spotted, guards can again make opposed Perception checks against the sailing checks of the buccaneers in the longboats to see the boats as they approach shore. The longboats get a +4 bonus on their opposed checks because of an obscuring mist spell cast by Isabella Locke. We killed all but 2 guards who will remain to work. We killed the boss sorcerer got the map. Loot; water breathing potion, head band of alluring charisma +2.
This event occurs only after we have become masters of Tidewater Rock. This encounter assumes that we entered an alliance with Lady Agasta Smythee and left the garrison of Tidewater Rock relatively intact. If this is not the case, you will need to modify this encounter to fit the circumstances of your campaign. After returning to the Rock from a foray upon the Fever Sea, we find that the island was attacked by sahuagin on the previous night. One of the garrison’s guards is dead and Mardus Siggs (or another NPC if Mardus was slain or joined the we s’ crew) languishes from a horrific wound to his thigh from a barbed sahuagin trident. Mardus’s wound was treated, but the jagged barbs of the weapon caused a great deal of damage to the bone as it was extracted, and Mardus now suffers from a major infection that will kill him in 1d4 days if not cured. A DC 20 Heal check or remove disease spell cures the infection, but the bone must be set properly and healed with another DC 20 Heal check or cure spell or his speed is permanently reduced to 10 feet. Questioning the Rock’s inhabitants reveals that a small group of sahuagin came upon Mardus in the evening as he was with his goats. The goatherd was surprised, but the guard happened to come along to summon him back to the castle for dinner. The guard held off the sahuagin while Mard s hobbled back to the castle to get help. When the rest of the guards arrived, the sahuagin were gone—apparently back into the sea—and the guard had been torn to shreds. A somber funeral service is held for the slain guard and if we helped Mardus, they are warmly praised.


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