Encyclopedia Lorica

Vanup to Vespin
7th Edition

Vaehran - see Castle Vaehraun.

Van der Rohe, Twilight (Geoff) - member of the Pegasus Corps on Vorn. Hir first mission was the Temple of Friendship mission. S/he also went to the Fire Dwarven Necromantic Research facility where hir adventures seem to have ended at the hands of a caustic undead monster.

Vanup, Shudar (NPC) - Vornish tribal gnomish chief. The wisest of the Shudars, if one of the poorest, he sent his own son, Han-gar, with the Sword Group to learn. See Shudarates.

Varini, Giacomo Irata (Ben) Surface gnomish male. Writer wanderer and Thoreauvian.

V'Edma (Lisa) - sorceress who was working with Lantelle Svorak in a magical maze having just escaped Luke's camp and an Eck/undead attack on 29 Nov. 10037. On Dec. 10th, she was captured and on the 14th, she arrived at Ayer's Rock. On the 26th she was tortured...

Venosa roots - red-brown plants from northern Vyrica and the Republic that grow quickly and is very nourishing. Only perfectly ripe roots can be used as a spell component.

Ventrooms - large 2ft diameter white mushrooms with red spots and demanding soil requirements. Component for ?

Verteux - area of Ilico near the base of the Sprines, inhabited largely by hobbits. "Major" cities: River City, Trade City. Areas of interest: Verteux Cave Complex, ? River.

Veridian, Iana (Ben) Human female. College student, physomancer. Presumed dead on India.

Verteux Cave Complex - also known as the Gnomish Fortress for fund-raising purposes - found by the Verteux Loonies while pursuing Orson's Gold. Along the little western tributary of the river [name?] was a series of three shallow depressions (graves) and beyond them a circular, rocky depression. To the right was a large pile of rocks, to the left was a grave of some kind, and down the middle between them was a well-worn foot trail leading down into the ravine. There was also a fairly obvious, ill-maintained trap door. The area clearly saw a fair bit of gnomish traffic. Going down through the trap door is a small cave system with about two levels, a couple of decrepit stairways (one of which collapsed causing great irritation and a couple of bruised botties). The most interesting thing was that one of the rooms seemed to be an indoor pool, compleat with some brightly coloured fish. Upon scooping out enough of the water with barrels and dumping it outside, there was revealed a passage which led to another similar room. Excavating the graves aboveground revealed the remains of dead gnomes (in gnomish graves-- amazing!), and a pipe buried underground which seemed to lead from the river in the direction of the cave system. Examining the river bank in the area where the pipe ought to come out showed that it was in fact there, but it was all silted over and could not have been in use anytime recently. So they didn't bother sabotaging it. [Perhaps it had been used to flood the caves?]

Concerning a return trip to the complex, Gabrielle Monsoir recalled, "We found lots of damage to the caves in general--wooden floors crashed through, various places were it looked like there had been a cave-in, and so on. It was like bumbling parties of adventurers had visitated this thing before. Indeed, Yanni seemed deeply troubled by deja vu phenomena. Equally eerie, he excavated a partially buried skeleton to reveal a single boot with a key hidden in it - the sort that would open a treasure chest as opposed to a door. Deeper inside the cave we found a room with more skeletons, and also a small three-by-three foot cage (empty). Yanni opened the lock, although I couldn't see whether he used that key he had found or whether he picked it. In any case, it was empty; its only relevance seemed to be its value as a clue. Not that any of us would know what to do with a clue if it marched right up, introduced itself, honked our noses, and sang anthems while bouncing merrily upon its ugly spotty butt."

Verteux Loonies - adventuring group led by The Pat originally out of River City. Party has leads there for treasure and possibly a portal (what?!?) in the Verteux.

Known or suspected members: Delver Astro Aloha of Trantor, Erskin, Geriatric Galakowitz, Horatio, Jack, Michigan Militia, Gabrielle Monsoir, Zhen Otdel, Yello Pages, The Pat, Pavel , Pilfer Stunkfellow-Stroup, Dry Wall, Yanni,
Based loosely on the journal of Gabrielle Monsoir and the singularly unreliable, if entertaining, recollections of The Pat: "The first of October 10039 was to have been a day like any other. I had elected to spend it at my favourite new tavern, The Gibbering Idiot where I was prepared for another day of nothing-in-particular with my pal, Yanni. Today's round of strangers was a real prize winner. First there was some guy named Delver carrying a map of the world with a huge Gnockagon inscribed all over it, who kept insisting that he was a Traitor. There was also a rather willowy girl who claimed to be a fortune teller named Zhen, and a bloke named Horatio Erskin (?) who was accompanied by a Dorc named Pavel, an entomologist who seemed to be rather anxious not to be found out. But far and away the wierdest was a fellow in a big stupid-looking reflective mask, who claimed that some people called him "The Pat". This fellow was unquestionably a few toes short of a kick in the pants. He traveled in with a little fellow who seemed to act as his seeing-eye dog, as well as hearing-ear and thinking-brain. He called himself "Yellow", although he hardly looked jaundiced. But then, parents often name their children the wrong thing.
Such a bizarre lot can only add up to one thing: an adventuring group. Therefore, it was with an air of destiny that a young Hobbling named Drogo came in and entreated The Looney ("Are you a Knight?") to help him search out his missing uncle. We set out with young Drogo the next morning to meet his father, Drogo, and his eight hundred brothers, sisters, uncles, aunts, and whatnot. They explained to us that the boy's uncle, Orson, had been the looney of the family (Oh, fickle moon!). Orson apparently had left the family fold and consorted with Orcs, Gnocks, Elves, Humans, and anything else that amused him. He talked about having great treasure, but would not reveal to anyone the nature of what he had found. Then, one day, a bird came bringing a message signed by Orson. However, by the time we got there, the writing had all disappeared from the paper. Luckily, Drogo sort of remembered what had been on it, and he and The Looney collaborated to reproduce the drawings, if not the text. (See Orson's Gold.)
So, we had practically nothing to go on, but that didn't bother us. We set out East along the river, toward the southern Sprines, ready for action. We travelled for two or three days without incident, but the third night was our first test. The excitement began during the first watch, which Yanni and Gabrielle had taken, when we were attacked by two or three gnocks, who used the blinding goop trick. Once we managed to get fighting, we drove off all but one.
The next day, a sunny October 5th, we searched the belongings of our assailants, we found food, mundane camping stuff, feathers which seemed like they might belong to the same sort of bird which had been used by Orson as a messenger, and three purple mushrooms, which some party members suspected of being magickal since it was The Pat's expert opinion that they were not edible. [Editor's note: Where did the blinding goop come from?] We also found, as we regrouped that morning, that our camp had been joined (mysteriously) by a fellow named Michigan Militia. (Or perhaps he showed up with Jack when we went back to Trade City to cure Yanni's blindness.)
Along the river [what river?] we found a field of gourds, which had us all in a tizzy because of the prominent role played by gourds on the message. The new pothead insisted on picking a few of them, which seems to have been one of those rare actions one takes in a lifetime which have no material effect on the course of the universe whatsoever. Later on, we found a fork in the river with a wondrously bleached skeletal hand (well, it was a big tree) sticking out of the cliff at the river split; the main channel continued off to the south, and a fork came off to the west. We (for some reason) decided to scout up the little fork, away from the actual mountains.
Along this little tributary thing, we hit the jackpot - a series of three shallow depressions (at which Delver commented, 'Graves! Let's dig them up!'), and beyond them a circular, rocky depression. To our right was a large pile of rocks, to our left was a grave of some kind, and down the middle between them was a well-worn foot trail leading down into the ravine. There was also a fairly obvious, ill-maintained trap door. The area clearly saw a fair bit of gnock traffic, although we didn't meet any of the little rockhopping trilks while we were there. We wasted a large amount of time trying to excavate the graves without shovels (even Michigan's gourds made fairly poor digging tools), and finally decided to hop down through the trap door and search for treasure down there. First off, Yello and Chef Looney ("I must follow the Sidekick, for am I not the leader?") scouted down, and eventually the rest of us followed, except for the NPC cowards in the party, who stayed above, the better to run away - and excavate the graves. No treasure was found. See the Verteux Cave Complex.
We then lost interest in the site and decided to explore further [elsewhere]. We scrambled up the other fork of the river (?) to a sort of a dead-end waterfall, (there was no way we could proceed without climbing equipment), so we went back and followed our original fork of the river. Near the original site there was a cliff overlooking a large ravine. We explored a small section of the ravine cursorily, but found nothing other than many many gnomish tracks and occasional bits of litter. It occurred to us that hanging around down there was not going to be especially productive, so we went back up the river westward until after 28 stadia [a stadium = approx. 607ft] or so, found ourselves at a small pond, about a twelth of a stadia wide and about 10 foot deep. The river, 20 foot wide or so at this point, fell majestically down a cliff into this lake. And, miracle or miracles, we saw small turtles. We were also attacked by a water creature with 15 foot tentacles which came up on Yanni from behind. We barely managed to beat the thing off. In addition, an Invisible Big Foot walked through our campsite that night.
However, we needed a lead, and the little turtles (related to another image in Orson's message) seemed like one. There was also the matter of the water in the lake; it was clearly coming in from the river via a waterfall, but the level of water did not rise; therefore, there had to be some escape for all the water. We figured it was possible that the place to go from here was down the drain hole-- and yet there was the monster. We sent a brave scout swimming into the pool (safely tethered by rope and with the rest of us watching carefully, ready to jump in and haul him out) to check it out. Sure enough, there was a kind of a drain out the bottom of the pool, and sure enough, the monster made a grab for our scout. Unfortunately we could find no good way to deal with the monster, and no assurance that the drain was a route we could take. Our search of the basin turned up no hints at all, and we found no natural direction in which to proceed. In particular, we could not discern any clue as to the next item on the drawing (the woman). There seemed to be nothing to do but turn back and go home, so we did. We assured the family of little Drogo that we could find no trace of their relative, Orson, or his alleged treasure. The family seemed more interested in getting our signature on some legal documents which would smooth over the inheritance process than anything else.
Another day found our party suddenly blessed with two new hangers-on: Pilfer Stunkfellow-Stroup and Geriatric Galakowitz, two halflings. There was also a mysterious being known as Jack who was hired as a cartographer. Somehow, we ended up back in that stupid little area we had just gotten done snurfling about in. Apparently The Looney found some "Military Types" who were interested in the Gnomish Fortress. Gnomish Fortress? Well, what I would have called an abandoned bunch of caves (the Verteux Cave Complex) is apparantly to be honoured with Strategic Military Importance. So the army pays us to map a perfectly safe and fairly boring lot of caves, and on the way we find treasure beyond the dreams of avarice, which of course we keep to ourselves 'cos the army won't know anything about it, and Orson's family no longer expects anything.
Since we seemed to lose the trail right at the lake, and we knew the lake had some kind of a drain out the bottom, we came upon the plan of damn damn damming the creek to hell. We put the dam back at the junction under the Skeletal Hand, and it worked well. So well that on the night of November 30, we were attacked by two dozen river zombies. Ignoring this event as unimportant, we tromped merrily back to the now-draining lake. It must have been our hope that draining off the water would also solve the monster problem. It seemed to, so we sent Pilfer down the drain to explore. The results were, of course, wonderful; he found that it led DOWN, until it got too narrow for further exploration. (The arrow made out of skulls pointing up the waterfall obviously wasn't important either.)
Eventually, we choose to rive deep into the heart of the mountains to the north of the gourds to look for the next clue (the lady with the prominent attributes); Michigan went ahead and never returned. We were saddened by his loss; after all, he undoubtedly had had some silver in his pockets. Oh, well - such is the way of things.
Unfortunately, at this point all we had for an orienteer was Jack, and there is reason to suspect that Jack wasn't doing very well. We wandered in the mountains until our limited food supply made it necessary for us to buy more food. After tromping a stadia here, a few stadia there, we came back and dismantled our dam, hid from the dragon that flew overhead that night, and went back to Trade City where The Pat, Yello Belly, and Yanni went back for supplies. The Pat secured some more money from his contact, and we returned to action. We still didn't find any treasure.
On December 10, we'd arrived back at Trade City, my side still sore from Yanni shooting me with a blond arrow in the dark of night. Despite loosing Michigan on the 8th, we were in good spirits. Naetheless, it is at this point that Jack left us, mumbling something about a woman named Jill. In his place we were joined by a chap calling himself Charles Magos-Slayer and Dry Wall the New Outdoorsy type. Oh, and a Sea Elf named Antonio, no relation to my cousin Vinnie. My motley band, including Yanni of the Two Notes Now, Yello Pages, Delver Astro Aloha of Trantor, Pilfer Stunkfellow-Stroup and Zhen Otdel, arrived fresh and safe at the gnomish mining fort on the 20th. I went and bought torches and things on the 21st , came back, and we camped at the river junction on the 23rd. We journeyed upstream past the old dam remnant, the curious religious Dead Deer Pits, another pond and cliff which we scaled by mystical means, and the cairn on the Western Peak of the Two Peaks, after which we saw a dozen giant two-headed trolls mining geodes. After Pilfur stole one of their rocks and Yanni offered them gifts, we climbed back down the rope they so convienently left at the cliff. Naetheless, we left all this obviously unimportant stuff and headed back to dig up rocks in the gnomish fort. (Did I mention the small chunk of thick magical rope we found?)
We spent some time digging out the skeleton in the gnomish fort, eventually discovering a wondrous room filled with goodies. There were skeletal dead fish, 2 crossbows, 2 bows, 100+ arrows, a box, 4 chests, two helmets, three crates, spices, china, and two glass aquaria. There was money and rotten clothes inside some boxes.
We journeyed back to River City and waited for Drogo to return from a trip. After telling him we hadn't found anything but vicious trolls, we departed for Trade City around the 29th. We took a month-long caravan to Dun Cess, and arrived around February 3rd, 10040.
After spending 8 weeks training in Dun Cess, we set off to make yet another information gathering strike for the military. Our point of interest in this mission is the convergence/divergence of the three rivers in the mountains of Pavimentum. The Mystic Gnomes have sent several expeditions to this location, and the military wanted to know why. The interesting thing is that we bought a putative Beigebeard map with a pentagon drawn on it, and one of its points directly corresponds to where we are going. The military provided us transportation through the blockade. Upon arriving on Pavimentum, we made our way up the river to the mountains. Our great and wonderful leader made many informational and decidedly marketable trips into each town and village on our way. We entered the foothills. Suddenly, we were surrounded........

Verteux mountains and River City - Group: Verteux Loonies. Problem: party has no clue what to do next. Need decent equipment. Need sane leadership (i.e. NOT The Pat). This puzzle is a lead on treasure and in all likelihood a portal

Vespin, General (NPC) - commander of Malmo defense, died (?) there.


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