D&D West Marches Part One Finale - The Ballad of Bridges Rhinestone Jr.

Jia, Bridges, Ozzy, Firion(RIP), Sky, Amber Moon, Gautier, Ven. Salad Force.

Building Bridges

Bridges Rhinestone Jr. Bard. Friend. Denier of critical hits. Counterspell Phantom. Voted least effective uses of Vicious Mockery by the Sandheim Bard College For Pretty Mouthed Boys.

A man who created his persona after a run-in with a Beholder who found him out and about in a forest one day. The Beholder spoke his Beholder Speak directly into his mind and asked him his name. Being too afraid to answer truthfully because holy fuck what even is this thing, he scoured his surroundings, and saw a paid if bridges across a shallow pond, and responded "Bridges..." looking down and seeing the rhinestones on his favorite pair of Rhinestone Encrusted Pants, he responded again "...Rhinestone..." and finally spotting near that pond a son and father fishing together, to which he finally responded "...Jr.".

The Beholder, seemingly satisfied with his answer, floated the fuck away because he ain't got legs, it's not like he's going to walk away. Swearing to never fucking holy shit ever get caught near one of those sick fucking monsters ever again god fuck they're so scary. He left his home, accepted his newfound identity of Bridges Rhinestone Jr, and through the next few years began an intensive regime of tapping into the raw power of magic, and harnessing it in ways that even the must studious has trouble truly grasping.

While proficient in musical instruments, Bridges found his power less in playing them and more in, well, just holding them as a spellcasting focus while he used his inspirational speech to help his friends and give them power. He was always typecast as the one who played music by those unfamiliar with him, but his abilities were best used as a raw force of personality.

The school could only teach so much, and Bridges decided that if he wanted to truly tap into the power of his Magical Secrets, he needed to go elsewhere and get better by experience. He heard tale of a town far, far away in an unexplored continent in desperate need of those willing to help explore this continent and uncover whatever secrets lay in wait to help progress the budding civilization there. He figured, hey, if we're going to ever get better at this Bard thing then we need to get our hands dirty. He said goodbye to his family, secured passage to Farwater, and began his journey to becoming more than he already was.

The Journey

Much of Bridges' journey has already been well documented. He arrived in Farwater, found it to be quite rundown and rustic. Began immersion therapy by battling undead during his first day there. Having never seen the undead in person, being punched in the face by a massive Flesh Golem was an incredible learning experience. As was learning just how useless his Knock spell really was. "But it can open any door!" unfortunately just wasn't good enough with any number of thuggish ruggish Rogue's around.

(Read more about this adventure here)

He was kidnapped and sent to a magical dream world demi-plane bed and breakfast and casino along with a few other people in Farwater and had all kinds of fun there like watching a child and adult play tic-tac-toe for way too fucking long, taking part in games of knowledge and skill, like trivia and target shooting, and even watched a Wizard try to cheat at a magic... uhhh, "my magic is better than your magic" exhibit? The cherry on top was a properly untested and unbalanced chicken race that lasted roughly 4 hours and resulted in the death of several innocent chickens. Also they fought a Dragon and Bridges made it fall down the stairs thanks to Dissonant Whispers.

(Read more about this adventure here)

He had a fateful run in with a Cambion that charmed him and made him remember the hard days of being a young pretty boy in the big city just looking to make some money. So much so that he spent the better part of his time in Farwater looking for That. Damn. Cambion. He never found him. Found some other devils but apparently not all devils know each other. Psh whatever.

(Read more about this adventure here)

A fateful encounter changed his views of what so called "monsters" could be, as he encountered an old spirit who guarded a tomb so old that it was still ancient a thousand years ago. The Spirit's name was Cynvard and he warned the group to stay away from the temple, as it contained a great evil which should never be unearthed. A fellow party member by the name of FINWIN DIMGAR, however, had other plans and viciously assaulted the guardian, and ended up killing him while Bridges pleaded for the fighting to stop, but it did not. Bridges managed to convince the guardian to lay down his arms and not attack, but however he could not convince the Gnome whose only defining trait was acting out his greedy violent fantasies.

(Read more about this massacre here)

After being dragged into an adventure he had no business being in, Bridges watched one of the most ignorant displays of stupidity that the world has ever seen as his party, for some fucking reason decide that, after being ambushed by vampires at Midnight and being invited to a clearly fucked up walking house with hulk hands, they would fucking go to the house, not let the rest of the party take any amount of a rest to get spell slots and inspiration back, just so they wouldn't "keep their dinner host waiting because that would be rude". Once inside of the house, the rest of the party refused to pay any amount of attention to anywhere they were walking, constantly setting off simple fucking traps to detect and literally almost killing one of the people there just from traps alone.

Bridges, being quite literally the most unperceptive person in the group, SOMEHOW had to be the one to look for traps, and actually found one, saving someone from walking into it and probably actually dying. Unfortunately though the stupidity returned in full force as the heavily armored Cleric rushed into the next room and starting fucking with everything she could get her hands on, setting off another trap and taking a whole bunch of damage. You know what, this is infuriating after all this time.

(Read more about this shit-show here)

Because so much in Farwater resolved around portals opening up in front of Bridges and taking him somewhere he didn't understand, he wasn't surprised when that happened and sent him directly to a strange plane he had dreamed about prior to this. See, he had dreamed that he came from another realm where he was friends with someone named Tony, and also President Wesley Snipes. Something about a vampire rock band that he was the manager of, a deal gone bad, drugs, lots of drugs, and a nuclear missile strike ordered by President Wesley Snipes that definitely destroyed most of California in an effort to eliminate an evil record company. Anyway, he arrived in a world so similar to this but instead of people looking about what people did everywhere else, they were all small balding men who looked exactly the same. After trying to figure out where the hell they were, being ambushed by a gang of arcane powered machine gun wielding men, the party leads an assault on a sorcerer DeVito who was actually probably doing the right thing, but was ultimately a victim of circumstance. Regardless, the party made their way back with some magical cocaine and all was right with the world.

(Read more about this adventure here)

After dealing with that first vampire bitch, Bridges was back on the case and this time with a party that understands the concept of traps. Returning to the scene of the walking house, the gang discovers, the hard way mind you, that those hulk hands weren't for show. Watching several of his party almost be murdered by said hulk hands provided quite a challenge for Bridges, one that he was confident he could overcome. Fortunately for him, he had spells that could get him the fuck out of there if need be so it didn't really matter one way or the other. While fighting the house, and several other vampires in broad daylight that for some reason didn't affect them, a loud voice was calling out of some kind of crazy arcane loud speaker and talking shit the entire way. With the house defeated, the party went inside and fought quite a slog with a powerful vampire, but thanks to Bridges and his handy Heat Metal spell, he negated quite a few nasty attacks.

(Read more about this adventure here)

A call to arms was posted for an adventure on the high seas! Bridges signed up along with some of his friends and not-friends. It was put on by an individual who seemed... touched, mentally. He had some issues communicating, was a little naive, and was definitely Borat. After dealing with an actual hour+ of people fighting about birds before the adventure could even begin, and a case of definite sexual assault as the Wild Magic Sorcerer Mass Suggested that all of the sailors be gay, they set sail. On the way across the oceans, they were attacked by pirates! But not just pirates, magical pirates! The attack signal was clearly broadcast but Bridges decided to let off an attack of his own before they could board, and Lightning Bolted one of the ships, destroying its mast all in one go. But then, teleportations abound as an entire brigade of pirates suddenly arrive in force. Bridges, utilizing his newly learned Polymorph spell, let loose on them in the form of a Oozaru Giant Ape. The pirate leader, Marcus DuCunt, arrived with his dual-wielding crossbows and almost did enough damage to put the Oozaru Giant Ape down, but with the help of Tides of Chaos from the Wild Magic Sorcerer, held on to the form just long enough to incapacitate the pirate leader. In a strange twist of fate, however, Bridges and Marcus hit it off and hung out for the entire duration of the sail. Bridges even Polymorphed Marcus into his own Oozaru Giant Ape to let him see how fun it is. He even cast Invisibility on Marcus to help him evade going to prison when they arrived at their destination.

(Read more about this adventure here)

The Vampire threat loomed on. Bridges and Co. were back in action to put a stop to it once and hopefully for all. Unfortunately for Bridges he was being assaulted by Timewave Alteration Signals and sorta kinda missed out on most of the early adventure. But by the end of it he he embraced the final battle by utilizing his powerful magical boots to help him remain stealthy while he cast Greater Invisibility on himself and counterspelled the powerful anti-bard vampire asshole to support his friends. After that battle he had earned himself the nickname "Counterspell Phantom", since the Vampire he was counterspelling had no idea he was even there while he wagged his magic fingers and dispelled the magic right in front of her face.

(Read more about this adventure here)

Salad Force, and the Future

Bridges Rhinestone Jr and his friends formed one of Farwater's mightiest guilds in the entire realm, Salad Force. Comprised of some of the most powerful arcane minds in town, and some of the mightiest warriors the land has ever seen, Salad was a Force to be reckoned with. There was nary a challenge that could phase them, and they had seen and done quite a bit. Using the power of their Sorcerer Supreme, Ven, they lived inside of a Mighty Fortress just 10 minutes from town. Eventually, in their travels, the group had acquired a Bag of Beans and sprouted a Pyramid, directly next door to their Fortress, guarded by a powerful Mummy Lord, but the Mummy Lord was reasonable and let the group use the Pyramid as a cool bar and hang out spot. They had 16 copies of Blade on Blu-Ray with Danny DeVito in every role, as well as a legitimate copy of Blade on Blu-Ray.

Bridges, tapping into his magical secrets thanks to the experience gathered over his time here, acquired the Ultimate Party Pegasus, and named him Cynvard in honor of someone he had hoped to be friends with. After pulling a job from Javid, and actually managing to cure him of his mysterious magical curse that made him the Borat he was, Bridges scored a Daern's Instant Fortress and as much Salad Force merch as he could possibly carry, with hopes of expanding his group across countries, the world, and maybe even the planes. So he let his friends from Farwater behind and set out for another grand adventure. Just him and Cynvard.

Finwin Dimgar disappeared from Farwater one day, probably moving on to the next great murder search of knowledge.

Bridges never found the Cambion that charmed him, though he still wants to.

Bridges fully intends to find a way to bring the spirit guardian Cynvard back to life, and is excited to introduce him to his Pegasus.

He rolled a natural one on his final level up hitpoints.

The final character sheet for Bridges Rhinestone Jr.

The Ultimate Party Pegasus in the flesh.

Special Thanks

Thanks to everyone at Colvillian West Marches for allowing me to play this character and make some good friends along the way. Shoutouts to Gisela, the greatest Firion, Anax, Orgnok, Raiden, Finwin Dimgar you motherfucker, Aev, Sky, Soleir, C-Swag, President Wesley Snipes, everyone else I forgot to mention but ended up being a part of Bridges and I's journey, and YOU!

"Hello everyone. My name is Bridges Rhinestone Jr. I've seen a lot in my travels and I've done a lot too. Made some good friends and killed some bitter enemies. I'm like super rich now and I've got all kinds of cool magic items, but I never forgot where I come from or who I am. In the end, life is what you make of it, which is why I've got a sick fucking Pegasus. You may forget a lot of things in your life, but when it comes to me, baby, I'm Bridges Rhinestone Jr. Remember The Name."

My name is Ryan. I like to play video games and Dungeons and Dragons and all kinds of other cool stuff. I also like to write. This is my website, it's nothing special, but I write about topics from time to time that probably make no sense. But if you think they do make sense, then hang around and check out some other articles. My friends call them "blogs" but goddamnit I've got a URL and everything, so they're "articles".

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