Christmas in July

Hey everybody! The DMsGuild is having a Christmas in July sale. There is a ton of fantastic  stuff on sale, including my very own Temple of the Mad Dragon Priestess! Check it out now @ http://www.dmsguild.com/product/243602/Temple-of-the-Mad-Dragon-Priestess?term=temple+of+the+mad+drago&test_epoch=0

 

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How Well the Thing is Doing

As of this morning I’ve had 19 sales of my module, “Temple of the Mad Dragon Priestess.” That’s so freaking cool! As a first-showing, I’m pleased with this.
     If you’re one of the 19, Thank You! ❤️ Let me know what you think, what you liked, what you didn’t like, and where you think I could improve.
      If you haven’t already purchased it, and you’re curious, you can grab a copy for only $1.95 here:
     This is an adventure for Dungeons and Dragons, 5th edition, set in the Forgotten Realms.  It’s for a party of 4-6 characters beginning at 1st level.  I tried to write it friendly enough for new dungeon masters and new players.
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I Did A Thing

It’s been a while since I posted anything, and I’m happy to show you one of the reasons why:

I published my first Dungeons and Dragons module on the DMsGuild @ http://www.dmsguild.com/product/243602/Temple-of-the-Mad-Dragon-Priestess

Blackstone Cave was once a smugglers’ lair, but it was cleared out decades ago. Now there are strange noises coming from the cave, and local authorities are afraid smugglers and bandits have taken up operations again.  What will the adventurers find? More importantly, will they be able to survive the machinations of the Mad Dragon Priestess?

Temple of the Mad Dragon Priestess is a two to six hour adventure for first level characters. It is a straightforward dungeon-crawl with exploration, traps, combat, and opportunities for role-paying. The module includes 15 pages detailing Blackstone Cave and the enemies within, full stat blocks for the boss and her lieutenant, and two maps of the lair and the temple below.

Luiz Prado (https://savedra.deviantart.com/) created this gorgeous cover for me.

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Character – Grelna

Yesterday I got to play in my very first Adventurer’s League (AL) game, and it was a blast.  I got to meet some new, awesome people, and immerse myself in another world with them.  We had a good DM, a fun module (5 chapters!) and active players.  I love the character that I played; she’d been in the back of my mind for a long time and I never thought I’d get the chance to play her, much less to play her in the AL.

Quick Info, from the AL FAQ, available here: http://dndadventurersleague.org/wp-content/uploads/2016/12/DDAL-FAQ-v3.0.pdf

The D&D Adventurers League encompasses all organized play for Dungeons & Dragons, and uses the fifth edition rules. The organization is maintained by Wizards of the Coast.

So this is Grelna, in all her nascent glory (minus world-specific details)

Grelna’s parents met during one of her mother’s many adventuring missions. Ingulf was in a spot of trouble, and Ulla rescued him. She convinced her companions to spare Ingulf and instead recruit him to their company. They adventured together for many months. Adventuring, however, is a very dangerous profession and when Ulla discovered she was pregnant they decided they’d had enough.

Two half-orcs alone are vulnerable, especially with a baby. They weren’t particularly welcome in any community, and neither wanted to subject their baby to the violence and cruelty of the orc tribes, so they decided to start their own community. They recruited several like-minded half-orcs, and began a nomadic village. It was a difficult life, and still dangerous, but they were free and had a modicum of safety in their numbers.

Two years after Grelna was born, her little sister Firda was born.  Their baby brother, Gerolt, was born three years after that.  By that time the little tribe had six families, and by the time Grelna was twelve they were eleven families strong.

Grelna has always been fierce and fearless.  She loved weapons training more than hunting, and would spend hours pestering her Poppi for stories, and begging him to show her his great sword, Rosethorn. Neither Ingulf nor Ulla ever let on that the sword actually belonged to Ulla – they didn’t want to encourage Grelna in her adventurous ambitions. It didn’t matter. Grelna eventually bought a great axe, named it Rosebud, and took off to seek glory and fortune.

Grelna wants to explore the world and live life to its fullest. She also wants to fight stuff. Above all, she wants her parents and her clan to be proud of her, and to be worthy of her “father’s” great sword. She has no set plans, and is perfectly happy to go wherever the work takes her. She maintains strong ties with her family and clan, and visits as often as  possible. She believes it is her duty to provide the clan with good strong children – someday (and Firda is happily trying to find her a good strong man to do the job!) She is brash, and sometimes reckless, and generally thinks all problems are nails and she’s a war hammer. She is not rude – Momi would kill her. She is often thoughtless, though, and causes harm through carelessness. Which she apologizes for. Please don’t tell Momi.

Get yer Feets Wet!

While doing research on the mercenary companies I found a record of Phoenix Company that included all of their residence halls.  One of them is located in a place named Feets-Wet Cross-Market.  Well, with a name like that, I had to check it out.  Feets-Wet is in the middle of a place called Wobble-Grass, a swamp covering a large portion of the south-central part of the continent.  Feets-Wet is a big city made of living bridges and buildings, and it was beautiful as well as terrifying.  I also found out that “Market” is the title given to any town large enough to create and sustain trade.  There is only one Cross-Market, where all the trade routes of Wobble-Grass come together.  I found references to only two other Markets: Pantano Water-Market, on the coast of Pantano Bay, and Water Drake Hunt-Market.  A Water-Market is a port.  “Hunt” is the title given to any community that focuses on hunting.  Water drakes are 6-8 feet long reptiles that look like a dragon mated with a crocodile.  These people literally make their living hunting the most dangerous animal in the entire swamp.

Anyway, click this link for a brief description of Feets-Wet Cross-Market.


This beautiful photograph is by Chloé Lam on Unsplash

 

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This work by Jean Headley is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives 4.0 International License.

 

Processes – a mundane post

So… I’ve been working for two weeks on write-ups of Erde’s mercenary companies and it’s not going well.  It’s like walking into a brick wall and every time I turn there’s another wall.  Usually this means something is wrong in the narrative and my subconscious has picked up on it.  I backed up and looked at it and I started thinking, Damn, that’s a lot of adventurers.  Maybe I’ve made the companies too big?  But Koenigsburg has a population of nearly a million people; a few thousand “adventurers” isn’t much.  Plus, the company totals are spread over several cities/areas, so the total of adventuring types within the city is probably closer to 1,000.  And then it hit me: if there are that many adventuring types in and around Koenigsburg, why are the bandits such a problem?  Well shit – there’s a great big gaping hole in my storyline.  The existence of the mercenary companies is established: they exist.  So why aren’t they taking care of the bandit problem?  And that’s where I am in my world-building.  Until I understand what is keeping the mercs busy, and where, I can’t move forward.  But I know when I get through this I’ll have more of the world’s political structure, current events, and the Big Bad’s machinations in my head.  And then I get to share them with you.  🙂

Until then, may all your road blocks force you down unexpected and fruitful new pathways.

~Jean Nadira, the stumbling World Walker

Mercenaries of Erde

After learning about the Alley Cats I’ve done some research on the adventurers of Erde, and discovered they have a guild all their own: the Mercenaries’ Guild.  Now these people don’t just go exploring wild places looking for old ruins to loot or goblins to slay.  They’re the ones who take on all those random quests that we Terrans think of as “side quests.”  Cities and nations (and in between) contract mercenaries to fill out the ranks of their armies.  Merchants contract them to guard shipments.  There are nautical companies that contract to work on ships, guarding against pirates on the open water and bandits in port.  It’s a fascinating subculture, a sort of cottage industry of violent tendencies.  Kinda like my family.

Click the link to read a little more:  Mercenary Companies


 

Creative Commons License This work by Jean Headley is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives 4.0 International License.

Happy Holidays!

I had a post planned for this week but you’re not getting it until next week because

Holidays!

Wrapping, shopping, more wrapping, visiting relatives, a little unwrapping, an impromptu D&D 5e game with extra players, more wrapping, and now more shopping (for foods)

Whatever you are doing this Holiday weekend, whatever you are celebrating (and I hope you are celebrating something):

May you have a wonderful, glorious, messy, memory-making Holiday!

With love, from Jean Nadira, World-walker Extraordinaire

Erde’s Shape-Shifters

I had made the climb to the Bright Mother’s Fountain, and this gave me the right to be there.  But I was still uncomfortable in this company.  Not because they are predators – a bunch of my family are cat-people, or dog-people.  We’ve even got a family of dolphin shifters.  No, it’s because this was clearly a sacred place to them, and I was very much an outsider.  So, although I was invited to join them around the Fountain and be part of the Ritual, I politely declined.  Instead I wandered the plateau and talked to people.  And I discovered they were terrifying and fascinating, lovely and terrible, haunted and driven, kind-hearted and killers.  Their power is seductive.

I miss my family.  I think after this I’ll go home for a bit.

Click here to learn a little more: The Shape-Shifters of Erde


 

Creative Commons License This work by Jean Headley is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives 4.0 International License.

The Fountain of the Bright Mother

Hello fellow World-Walkers!  I’ve been off on a grand adventure the past couple of weeks and I’m only now returning to civilization.  I also learned there are places on Erde where my ship cannot go.  That was new and different.

Near the border of the Yoremba and Unhur’ahn, where the desert meets the mountains, is a high plateau.  You can’t get there unless you climb, or have wings.  I tried.  I tried really hard because it’s a long climb.  Had I realized my ship would not take me to the plateau directly I’d have planned better.  But I made it!  And because I made the climb I was also made welcome by the most diverse, wonderful, chaotic, terrifying group of shape-changers I’ve ever met.  (And some of my family are shape-changers.)  I will not share the details of our celebration: that was private (if you can call a gathering of a couple thousand people “private”).  But I will tell you a little about the plateau, and the well known as the Bright Mother’s Fountain.  <— Click the link!

May the Bright Mother bless you as well, and warm you in your travels!

 


 

Creative Commons License This work by Jean Headley is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives 4.0 International License.