Monday, October 12, 2015

An Evil Carnival in Azurth

Art by Jeff Call
Last night, our fifth edition Land of Azurth campaign continued. A mysterious carnival on the outskirts of Riverton hadn't paid its taxes (and a few people have disappeared--but that's less important), so Mayor Gladhand asked the party to step in and take a look. Casing the place in the daytime when it was closed, revealed very little activity, but Shae the Ranger played Dr. Doolittle and found out the horses for the carnival wagons were actually townsfolk who had been polymorphed.  The carnies run off the party before they can get more. This will be a theme of the session as the party tries to get to the horses to get more information, but are thwarted by carnie folk. The frogling thief Waylon theorizes horses may have switched places with humans!

While the party plots, darkness arrives and the carnival opens. Dagmar discovers the ale and cider at the food tent is magical, but the party lets the townsfolk drink anyway to monitor its effects. As far as they can tell, it makes some people slightly sick and they are escorted out of the carnival. Meanwhile, some townsfolk disappear into exhibits, and halfling clowns seem to close in on the PCs, subtly, but menacingly.

Pretty soon the carnival seems to close--but the real show begins. Carnies reveal themselves as wererats and attack. The turban of Marvello the Mentalist hides an intellect devour that attacks Dagmar the Cleric and Erkose the fighter. A cry for help from a damsel in distress in the peepshow tent turns out to be Verna the Viridescent Beauty who is really a green hag. Mister Pumpkin, the carnival owner, makes his appearance along with an entourage of capering, knife-wielding halfling clowns.
Verna before she turned out to be a Hag in disguise
The party comes out pretty well, though. They discover that Mister Pumpkin is a rat-king and a swarm of rats beneath a robe. All the carnies are wererats, and all the animals in the menagerie are hapless polymorphed townspeople. The rats flee, and the party confiscates their small amount of treasure without ever knowing the full nature of their plan, where the hag and the other monsters that might have been in the exhibits got off too, or what consuming the concessions will do to the townspeople.


Anonymous said...

Evil carnivals are always a good time! Sounds like a fun game with lots of dangling thread for future adventures.

Did they find a way to make the polymorphed townsfolk back into their original species?

Trey said...

Not by the end of the session. They plan to ask the Princess to help with that.