Rival Presence

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"Rival Presence"
Campaign 1 session
Session no.Session 34
Session dateAugust 6, 2022
Start dateJanuary 11, 354 WSK
End dateJanuary 13, 354 WSK
Bunnies as the Dungeon Master
Narrative chronology
"Hollow Homecoming" (1x33)
"Speed is Key" (1x35)
Session order
"Hollow Homecoming" (1x33)
"Speed is Key" (1x35)
List of Campaign 1 sessions

"Rival Presence" (1x34) is the 34th session of the first campaign of Itora.

The party sign up for the upcoming tournament, encounter a few potential rivals, and partake in sideshows and competitions.


The group gear up, purchasing a multitude of magical items and enchantments to improve their gear for the upcoming tournament.


The next morning, they head over bright and early to the sign up booth in the market square, where they are greeted with an impressive crowd of people. Sizing up the competition, the group feel fairly confident that they are more experienced and equipped than most of the crowd. Finally putting their new name to paper, Friend and Friends signs up for the tournament, with Versa as Ire, Gael as Gael, Ricoril as Ric, and Pine as Gandalf's Dad. The group are given a pamphlet outlining the rules and regulations of the competition, and then are directed to a different tent to collect sign up fees and determine their initial combat match-up.

There, Ricoril and Pine front the 100gp for the group, and learn more about the tournament's structure. The first round is a battle of both luck and skill against pre-determined monsters. Judged on a lack of damage taken and the swiftness of victory, only the eight highest performing groups get seeded into the team vs team portion of the tournament. Alternatively, one team may buy-in and receive 8th seed without needing to fight the monsters - a position awarded to the highest bidder. The group decide to fight the monsters, with Ricoril's mighty spin providing the group their mark for the first round of the tournament - a cyclops and a catoblepas.

Pine, dressed as a butler, holding a statuette of Gael on a platter, by Bean.[art 1]

From the other side of the tent, the group overhear someone boasting about the paltry highest bid for 8th seed. They claim that the current 2,500gp bid is a pittance, less than they had received for allowance as a child, and raise the bid to 15,000gp. Gael seeks to provoke them into wasting their money, announcing a counter bid for 25,000gp. The figure, now identifiable as an elven man, approaches them and interrogates them about how someone "of their ilk" could have such wealth. Pine recognizes the insignia and color palette of their uniforms as that of House Woodmere, one of the Rottian Noble Houses. The man asks for proof of such fantastic wealth before dignifying Gael's bid with a counter bid. Gael tactfully speaks into their Ring of Masks to summon Pine to bring them a jeweled statuette of their likeness[1], worth 1000gp. Pine presents it to Gael, performing the role of a dutiful butler who is summarily dismissed after performing his duty. The elf is a bit taken aback, not expecting such a display, and ups their bid to 30,000gp. Gael smiles, wishes him luck in the tournament, and walks away, content at forcing them to spend double the money that was needed.

Seda Squad

As the group depart the tent, Gael notices the rapid approach of footsteps, only to turn around and see a short tiefling woman staring up at them with big eyes and a wide grin.

Oh my god, hi! you guys look so strong! Are you entering the tournament?? We were just about to too! We have so much in common, let's be friends so that we can be friendly rivals when we beat you!
— Seda to Gael

Her companion, a tall, muscular human woman, slowly approaches the overly excited tiefling, and introduces herself as Nalyta and her tiefling ward as Seda. Nalyta apologizes, explaining that her friend can be a bit overbearing at times, but she means well. The groups banter for a bit when topic of cults arises. Seda invites the party to join hers, much to Nalyta's insistence to not call it a cult; the party have mixed reactions to this offer, largely declining respectfully. Seda eventually runs off to sign up for the tournament, with Nalyta noting that not only did she go ahead without the money to sign up, but she entered the wrong tent entirely. She wishes F&F good luck, and goes to fetch her friend.


Versa and Ricoril head to the library to research the monsters they'll have to fight in the coming days, learning valuable information about their strengths and weaknesses to determine what strategies would best defeat them.

Pine delves into the history of the tournament, learning that this is one of the largest of its kind in recent history. Cleiben is known for its athletic spectacles, with competitors traveling from all over the country just to compete at the many competitions and tournaments. He also learns that many of the features such as the Death Ward that prevents creatures from dying while in the arena have come about in the last few decades of city's multi-century history.

Pine finishes glass-working, creating a pair of glass manacles. He then enchants them with a property based around the spell Identify, creating Manacles of Identification.

Versa studies the notes she stole from the devils, and makes some progress in cracking their Infernal cipher.


With a day to relax before the grueling combat ahead, the party decide to engage with some of the sideshows the tournament has to offer. Ricoril enters the Grand Melee, where fighters engage in solely melee combat to prove their might, achieve fame, or attract potential recruiters. Out of the roughly 200 combatants, he is able to fell several foes, and tank dozens of blows before he finds himself unable to compete, placing in the top 10% of fighters and earning a 50gp prize.

Gael enters an archery competition, quickly finding themselves at an even match with an unknown elven archer. The two find themselves in the final in a dead heat on the final arrow of the set when the elf manages to edge out a victory by a single point. They approach Gael afterwards, introducing themselves as Encyea, and complimenting them on their skill. She asks Gael whether they've entered the tournament and are pleased to learn of the potential opportunity to try their skills again head to head. She offers Gael her winnings of 100gp, noting that she believed Gael outperformed her. Gael accepts the sack of coins, but sneakily latches it back to Encyea's belt as she walks away.

Versa snoops on the Seda Squad to determine whether their cult inclinations are something to be worried about. She determines that it's mostly a word choice issue, and that the rest of their group more or less follows Seda as their leader, but not in an organized cult-like fashion. She also learns of their strategy involving polymorphing teammates to deploy over long distances.

Pine enters a cooking competition, creating an outstanding dish, winning himself first prize of 100gp.

Featured characters

Friend and Friends






  1. See "Kinky" (1x08).


  1. Pine, dressed as a butler, holding a statuette of Gael on a platter, by Bean (source). This file is a copyrighted work. Its use in this article is asserted to qualify as fair use of the material under United States copyright law.