Taihun

Haunted Fishing Village pt. 7

Erimeyoma steps between the child and whatever she is looking at, and turns to try and see what’s caused her fear. She loosens her daggers, taking one in her right hand and keeping the quarter staff raised, ready to ward of any blows, in her left. She sees a spectral image in the window, a ghostly apparition that appears both haunting and beautiful. It looks to be that of a man in one moment, and a woman in another. It shifts between the two, as though in a dream.

Ouriana slowly turns around, tilting her head to the side. “Well… That’s a thing that’s happening…” She slowly slides her Longbow back into her hands and nocks an arrow, narrowing her eyes and trying to gauge the danger they are all in, ready to grab the girl and run after firing a shot.

Both seeing the shifting spectral shape and standing firm, taking up their weapons and an aggressive stance, Erimeyoma and Ouriana glance quickly at each other as they shift their weight in readiness.

The ghostly form moves through the wall and window into the air, hovering inches above the ground, reaching its hand out and getting closer ever so slowly.

After a few seconds that feel like an hour, the thing stretches forward in a lunge, screeches an unearthly sound like nails on a chalkboard and charges the two warriors and the girl, dissipating into harmless smoke as it hits.

The smoke clears quickly, and as the seconds roll on it becomes clear that the main danger has passed… for now.

The girl faints and collapses to the ground. Eri and Ouri pick up the girl and carry her to the tavern to get help and find her family. The tavern is silent, the fire nothing but low embers casting the room in an eerie orange/blue glow.

A dozen people crowd together at the bar, cautiously holding their breath and listening out for signs the danger has passed. The door swings open and clatters against buckets and rods behind it. Erimeyoma strides in, carrying the unconscious girl. The crowd gasps and whispers, and then a single man steps forward. He stands tall with a broad chest and a heavy-looking beard. His hair is dark and thick, while his clothes show signs of wear and repair.
“Is… did they get her, too?”
“Did who get who?” Eri asks him, “And where are this child’s parents?” As Eri asks her questions, Ouriana casts her eyes over the man who spoke, before looking around the room. She’s taking in the faces, and the interior, trying to gather anything she can from the room and sees Humans, Halflings and a Half-Orc among the patrons, all looking terrified.

The burly man answers Eri. “The spirits… the damned! Strangers, evil plagues this village. A curse is laid upon us and terror stalks our roads. You would do well to leave this place if you can.”

When prompted again, the man will stare at the girl for a bit. “I do not know this child. She is a stranger to me.” It becomes clear that everyone in the village knows everyone else, and they likely know the others from the nearby villages given the small populations.
“Is there a chance her parents could be passing through? Has anyone seen her before at all?” Eri asks, disappointed that this girl isn’t elliciting the overwhelming support she thought she would.
“No. We rarely get travellers here overland, and the last ship that docked was months ago. She must be from elsewhere… Or she’s part of the curse…” The rest of the room gasps again and reels back, shrinking into the darkness behind the bar. The man turns and holds out a hand to stop them. “It is merely a possibility. We should take care of this child until we know more!”
“She seemed as afraid as you all are now. Maybe she can help resolve this issue with spirits.”

“How can a dead girl help us? Let’s burn her body and hope the curse leaves with her ashes!” A drunken patron shouts up, with the breaded man who’s been speaking up to this point raising apologetic eyebrows. His broad size and bearing, however, tell you that he’s not going to let the other patrons act on their fears.
“A dead girl might be a little hard to talk to, but as far as I can tell this one is just passed out from fright. Maybe you should hold off before holding her funeral … you were planning to give the poor child a funeral, weren’t you?” Eri asks, trying to shame the speaker.
Ouriana steps forward, her Bow once again across her back and a dagger in her hand. She tosses it casually, from one hand to the other. “Perhaps we just need to be calm.” She states clearly, bringing the room to a comfortable hush. It seems she’s confident in dealing with these sorts of alienating situations. “We have some questions about the evil that seems to be plaguing you. Tell me about this curse you speak of” She leans against a table while waiting for the response, for which the burly speaker takes responsibility.

“I am Arth, Harrison. My vocal friend at the back is Ed.” He says this while clearing a small rectangular table that is just big enough to place the girl upon. He gestures for Erimeyoma to put her down. “We are simple folk, here. We fish, for the most part. Little else to do. Our lives are without complication. When the natural world fails to be explained, we find it hard to operate clearly.” He helps in looking the girl over, and waves to someone at the bar to fetch him some water.

“As for the curse that currently afflicts us, we know only that it’s been a few months that things have been going strange. It started as noises at night, and then things started going missing. We thought it was one of those damned Cursed Children from Somergleam Hold at first. Then… then we began hearing stories of things being seen in the night. Spirits, often in the shape of loved ones. And the screams…” He trails off, lost in thought.
Ouriana placed her hand gently on his arm “Somergleam Hold?”
“Yes… Somergleam Hold is the large town to the north. We do most of our trade there, and by the grace of our Queen we are protected. You truly are strangers to this place.” Ouriana is convinced he’s earnestly trying to help, but he has limits on how much he’s willing to do. He also seems out of place for the area, but the sort to stay put.

Erimeyoma opens her small wooden box and pulls out the hinged sections. Quickly pulling spices and herbs from various stoppered bottles, bundles of cloth and glass tinctures, she finds the right combination of substances that, when passed under the nose of the girl, wake her up immediately. From what she can tell, Eri sees no lasting effect of her fall.
She helps the girl sit up. “What’s your name, child? Where is your family?”
The girl looks at the reptilian eyes of Erimeyoma, and the demonic horns of Ouriana, and seems oddly calm about the situation.
“Tel. My name is Tel. Bettel Primrose.” She looks around the room, her eyes adjusting to the dim light of the embers. “My family is… far away.”
“See? She’s part of all this! We should send her on her way!” Shouts another patron. The room seems to be turning. Arth shoots Eri and Ouri a look.
“Perhaps we should retire to less public surrounds. I have a cabin at the far end of the beach.”
“Do you think you can walk, Tel?” Erimeyoma helps the girl to her feet as she nods. Ouriana slides her second dagger out and flashes her sharp teeth at the room before nodding to Arth. “Let’s.”

Arth leads the way and takes everyone across the beach a ways. After fifteen minutes of walking in the freezing evening air, a turn around to the other side of some rocks reveals the cabin. A simple structure, with no lock on the door and only two rooms. Inside, the wind seeps through various small holes and gaps, but is greatly reduced.

Lighting a lamp that hangs from the ceiling, Arth grabs a half dozen blankets from a small cupboard. Placing them in the middle of the floor, he then rearranges the five stools that were set against one wall and places four of them in a circle around the blankets.

Arth then goes to the other room, from which the sounds of clattering can be heard, and then he emerges with a small cloth bundle, about the size of large pumpkin or melon. Sitting upon a stool with a slight curl in the corner of his mouth, he places the bundle on the floor and opens it up, revealing sweet cakes, glazed buns and fruit-filled breads. Taking one up, he motions to the group with it before taking a hearty bite. “Dig in. I don’t have a hearth, and it’s too windy to build a fire outside. I buy these from some Gnome merchants whenever they visit Bersault-on-the-Hill… They’re the best in the land. Try one!”

He’s obviously trying hard to make Tel more comfortable, but she simply takes a blanket and wraps it around herself.
Ouriana continues to stand, looking around the room. Eri sits next to Tel. “How did you end up here?”
Tel stares at a glazed bun for a moment before snatching it and returning to her stool as though she never moved. Munching hungrily into it, her face scrunches up as though she’s not used to such sweetness, but she powers through it. She manages to answer between chews, her voice growing steady as she bundles up in the blankets. “I came with the travellers. They brought me here last night, but they turned mean.” Her eyes flick up to the lantern light, and she shifts her stool slightly as if to get closer to it.

Arth grabs the lantern and brings it down, placing it in front of Tel. He then sits back down and looks thoughtfully at Ouriana and Erimeyoma. “You’re travellers, aren’t you?” As he sees faces turn, he throws out a rebuttal of sorts. “I don’t mean to accuse… I simply say that Tel came here with travellers, and you are travellers yourselves. Did you arrive with a party? Or did you follow a group here?”

What do you do?

Erimeyoma +15XP (85 Total XP)
Ouriana +15XP (95 Total XP)

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Somergleam Stopoff pt. 2

Cosima and Laucian both leap into action and chase after the blade-wielding assassin. Laucian manages to dodge and weave through several dozen patrons before finding a pile of barrels off to one side. Skipping onto the first, he quickly scales the pile and reaches the top. Striding lightly, he manages to climb atop the crowd and jump from shoulder to shoulder of the crowd, using them to get to higher ground and head off the quarry. Below he can see Owen, the town guardsman, now trapped in the crowd and trying to negotiate his way through with his steed.

Glancing up as a shadow passes over, however, the Elfblood sees a small Gnome in black almost dancing from rooftop to rooftop, struggling to keep pace but finding the lack of crowds a boon. It appears the pair of them are both chasing down the accused.

As Cosima calls out to her potential ally, he ignores her and instead darts his eyes around, coldly calculating as much as he can.

He’s spent a few days here, and knows the streets well. Striding across a few more shoulders, much to the chagrin of the crowds below, he hitches onto the side of a building and hauls himself up and out of sight of the street below.

Cosima continues a few more steps, catching the eye of the assassin who dodges to the right and away from the throng of crowds, seemingly content that he has lost another pursuer.

Laucian then stands up straight at the edge of the building, opens his arms as falls backwards, dropping four stories. Almost by accident, he lands into a passing cart of straw that parts the crowd. Lying in it for a few seconds, he then rolls out of it and lands on his feet at the mouth of the dead-end alley.

Cosima sees she needs to get across the street, and is yet to notice that the strange Elfblood is back in the chase. Reaching the edge of the building, she hops back to get a run-up and leaps into the air! Soaring for a few feet, she then grabs a streamer that is billowing strongly in the wind from the corner of another building. Swinging from it, she kicks at the start of the arc up to give her the height needed to reach the other roof.

Releasing the streamer and taking a moment to move the hair from her eyes, she chooses to focus on chasing the assassin and to freak out later about the amazing feat she had just performed.

Laucian looks up and sees Cosima has arrived just in time. He calculated it all perfectly. He stand blocking the exit, and Cosima is covering the high ground. Despite his earlier ignoring of her, she factored heavily in his design.

The cloaked figure turns as he nears the far wall that blocks his progress. Cosima looks down, silhouetted against the bright sky, while Laucian examines the trapped masked man, watching for any sign of aggression or movement as well as getting a measure of the man. “You have nowhere to run to; we have you surrounded.” Laucian calmly explains, an edge of menace to his voice so his quarry doesn’t think to try anything. “Please, let’s try and settle this… Nicely.” He adds, taking a tentative step forward. Laucian notices the flash of intent in the man’s eyes, as though the threat doesn’t concern him. He shouts a word that isn’t understood, perhaps in an unknown language or arcane tongue, and steps into the wall behind him. He then laughs as he dashes away into the stone.

What do you do?

You can both make a single ranged attack before he disappears, with advantage (roll 1d20 twice, and chose the highest number to be your attack roll). Alternatively, you can choose to dash forwards to try and catch him before he disappears; make a Dexterity saving throw.

Cosima +15XP (55 Total XP)
Laucian +15XP (15 Total XP)

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Somergleam Stopoff

Owen, one of the riders from Somergleam, is convinced by Cosima to provide escort not to the borders, but to Somergleam proper. It seems the threat of an oncoming skirmish with a Goblin tribe worries the small Gnome not.

Owen chats a little as they ride, clearing up that he would rather not reveal the augur’s predictions and cause a panic if it proves to be false, and the calibre of those involved give him pause. However, he does say that the person he was looking for appears to be an Elven noble, although they may appear shabby and as a peasant. Cosima whispers to him, however, and sweetly asks again why they were interested, her tongue dripping with honeyed words and reaching beyond the professional veneer Owen put on.

As they reach the base of the hill and make their way through the first gatehouses, Owen confides in Cosima, although she can tell he’s still careful about what he says. It appears she cannot win him over as easily as she does others.
“Jooren Besal, our augur and the court magician, has had various visions of late. He claimed that the northern farm crops would fail the last few seasons, and they would have were it not for outside aid; he deserves my respect and that of all Somergleam.” The last gatehouse opens, and a drawbridge covers the small gorge cut into the hillside at the walls. The last portcullis sits ready-raised. The town ahead looks of Halfling build for the most part; their iconic architecture, the upper floors jutting over the ground below, pepper the majority of the first few districts. The roads are covered in a layer of muck and leavings, but the layout seems pleasant enough. The palace lies ahead, the road to it lined with businesses and fine homes of stone and plastered frame. Floral arrangements sprout from most window boxes, and do wonders for the smell. Strongly scented elderflowers bloom by the side of various structures.

Owen leads the small caravan to the market square. “His other visions have been of a more disturbing bent. Enemies flock to our borders, it seems. Jooren has told of a coming evil in the North, battling a winged demon that takes the form of an Elven man. Another vision came to him last night; that this Elven man, looking of noble birth, appeared in the very field we found your group. While he may sometimes be awry with the details, the general is never wrong. I fear we may have been too late.”

When the group stops, the market stands around them. Brightly coloured fabrics hang from every flagpole, every tentpost and every signpost. The stalls lie open with wares to sell, fruits and vegetables and baked goods. The place heaves with activity, the wake of the wagons quickly filling in with people.

Laucian whinces at the sight of so many. He pulls his hood a little further over his face and finishes his business with the halfling man.
“And if you ever find yourself heading south… don’t head south. The villages there, I hear they’re becoming cursed places, my friend.” He tips his hat brim and looks fervently around the crowd before finding a gap in the throng and slipping in, disappearing easily.

He was quick to leave, but no matter: Laucian had what he needed from him. He unfurls the written note, upon which is scribbled the address of the augur. Angrily, he crushes the paper in his hands and drops it to the floor. ‘The Palace, Augur’s offices’ it read. The paper quickly gets trampled into the muck on the ground. Needing to find this augur and use his services was top priority, but how would he access the palace? He’s a simple Elf.

Furious, he punches the wall behind him and leans back into it, leting his eyes take in the massive horde of people before him, buying and selling and walking… A set of wagons escorted by town guards now sits in the middle of the square. They weren’t there before.

Owen begins to bid Cosima a safe stay when his voice trails off. His eyes look past her into the crowd. Suddenly, he leaps up and kicks off Cosima’s wagon with one foot and uses the momentum to flip over and onto the seat of his horse yet again. Squeezing his heels in, the mount powers forward into the crowd, the people dispersing quickly and getting out of the way. All eyes following the soldier, both Cosima and Laucian see that he is in pursuit of a masked man weilding a blade: it is dripping with blood. A scream erupts from one of the side streets ahead, presumably a citizen discovering a bloody body. It appears a murder has occured.

What do you do?

Cosima +15XP
Laucian +0XP

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Haunted Fishing Village pt. 6

Eri’s eyes focus on the child, widening to appear as non-threatening as she can. “Come down; the imps are no longer a threat.” The child carefully scrambles to the edge and calls out, quietly but audibly.
“… Are they really gone?” her voice is trembling, terrified of the beasts no doubt. Ouriana reaches out a hand, palm face up and takes a step towards the child “Yes, will you come down and talk with us?”

The girl climbs down onto some boxes stacked against the side of the building, and jumps down from there. She’s wearing a simple calico dress, unsuitable for the oncoming weather, although the daytime was pleasant and warm, especially inland. She appears nervous, looking around at various rooftops and drawing attention to the various knocks and creaks as the wind begins to pick up again. She takes only two small steps away from the side of the building before staring at the windows of the house behind Ouriana and Erimeyoma. He face grows ashen and her mouth is agape. Trembling, she strains to let out any noise at all.

The windows shutters of the house bang once more. Do you turn around?

What do you do?

Erimeyoma +10XP
Ouriana +10XP

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On the Road At Last pt. 5

Nix looks to each of her companions, takes a breath in and steps forward. She almost absently throws one hand into the air holding a strip of leather. It doesn’t bend as it should, instead being observed to stand upright. A slight breeze seems to tousle her hair as she starts at a low whisper; her annoyance at the situation causing her voice to rise as the wind does, making her verbal component herd clearly. “Shor-maegi!”

The wind dies down and the Gnome places her leather strap back in her pouch, the piece going limp as she lowers her arm. It is only when she slows and turns slightly to address the others that they can see a faint shimmer of something hovering in front of her. Catching the light from certain angles and disappearing just as quickly, there appears to be faint blue or gold streaks of something, like the sun is bouncing off armour that isn’t there. The shape of it looks to be of plate, and yet she moves unhindered. Theodore almost jealously touches his collar for a moment.
“Only way through is forward.” She motions to the others and sneaks toward the cave mouth, keeping her eye out for anything suspicious.

The rest follow quietly. Moving through the shadows of the cave and led by those that see better in the dark, the party finds the path descending. The heavy rain they moved through to get here having moved on, traces of water still trickle down the various natural channels that have formed.

Darrin awakes with a splutter, his hair wet and some muddy water in his mouth. Shaking his head, he finds that he is upside down and tied to a stone pillar. Below (Above?) him is a large pool of water from what he can tell. It’s near pitch-black in this cave. His Darkvision, however, affords him the ability to make out that he is in a flooded cave. Not much else is clear. He appears to be alone, there are carved stone walkways along the walls and a few holes and doorways leading to other places. Judging by the waterlines and the stone erosion, this cave floods and drains fairly often.

His hands bound together, he still has free movement of the fingers. It’s enough to disrupt usual casting. Concentrating on the precise movements especially hard, remembering the careful way Nix had taught him instead of the grander movements he’s used to, he whispers “A’seris”. Picturing in his mind a blade, he manages to summon a familiar knife and cuts through his bonds slowly and surely. It appears the ropes were poorly tied, however, and Darrin falls into the water. Now he’s free, he easily bobs to the surface, though. There appears to be no aquatic life in the pool, further cementing the idea in his head that this is a flood basin and not a permanent body of water. Noticing several possible exit tunnels both above and below the water, he follows the first he can reach above the water level, through winding tunnels and comes to a dead end. The other three above-water tunnels seem to do the same thing. And yet in two of these four tunnels, sounds can be heard echoing from an unseen source, like that of Goblins speaking in their garbled tongue.

He searches in the tunnel and finds a crevice big enough to squeeze through behind an outcropping. It’s a drop down, and he can see that there is a series of footholds in the wall below to aid in climbing back up. Nothing apart from rock can be seen from the angles Darrin can reach up here.

Talison hushes the party and asks them to lower down, as Theodore taps his arm to alert him to noise. The pair seem to have found camaraderie in their recent bout. Ahead, Talison can see what seems to be a pool of water flooding the tunnel ahead. The air feels chilly, and the water looks dark.

Using his new favourite spell, Darrin draws a smiling charicature on the rock above the crevice. He then lies flat on the floor and makes a door-slamming sound at the mouth of the hole, and waits… It’s not long before the sounds of Goblins gets closer. One seems to wander to the mouth of the crevice, shout up, and then poke his head up and looks around. They do not use a light source. Turning slowly, it peers into the gloom trying to find the source of the noise. It stops at Darrin, and wordlessly lowers its head back down. It appears the Elfblood has been spotted.

What do you do?

Darrin, roll for initiative (1d20 + your Dexterity modifier).

Talison +10XP
Nix +10XP
Darrin +15XP
Ero +10XP
Ezra +10XP
Adrik +5XP
Lorawyn +5XP
Theodore +10XP
Kain +5XP

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Hyxhuathil Briefing pt. 9

Gemscale laughs at Halfdan and says aloud “If that was an item I was searching for, I wouldn’t just let the man go… He would be telling me who he gave this gem too, when and where, and then he would be placed in jail or worse for his crimes.” Gemscale scoffs at the silliness of the scene and turns back to the kobolds. “Don’t be afraid of me I just want to know who burnt you like that, we might have a common enemy if I am correct in my assumptions.” The Kobolds stare at Gemscale, a little intimidated, and try to move away without saying a word.

Knives ensures the trader is securely bound, drags him to beside a wheel of the wagon and calls out to Halfdan. “My friend, if you have been wronged maybe we could help, at the very least let me know why I dirtied my claws?” his voice echoes against the rocky walls of the buildings and reach the pirate soundly. He simply continues walking away, raising his hand and then dropping it dismissively. Hyln watches the one armed man walk away and shakes his head. The world is full of strange folk, he thinks to himself.

Lorrias jogs after the one-armed man and begins pleading. “I have wronged and attacked you. I ask your forgiveness!” The man scowls through his long hair that falls in front of his face as he stomps on. “… In my defense you were a raging stranger in our midst. Let me make amends. What happened to you?”

Halfdan continues silently walking until he leaves the village, and begins a long, lonely trudge back the way he came.

The Stone Giants gather, and ask Kejermann for information. He clears up that he and Halfdan had a disagreement as to the ownership of an item, and that the item in question is no longer with him. There are no stolen goods here, and now that Halfdan has left, no claim to a crime. The Giants see that he has been attacked visciously, and escort him out of the village, too.

Tuhril walks up to HexFang and Aar on their rooftop. “This was not good. We Giants do not like disruption. I do not like disruption. This incident may draw attention. You should leave now. Move south, and head for the lake. Turn east and ride for Gorgek. In Gorgek you will meet Grolak. Grolak with help you. Grolak is a friend of Tuhril.”

With that, and all the supplies needed given to the group, they leave and begin walking south. Between the terrain and the size difference, the Giants did not have horses. The Orcs in Hargijk do, however… Does the group walk south to reach the lake on foot? Or do they divert southwest to Hargijk, and obtain mounts for the journey?

What do you do?

Hexfang +10XP
Gemscale +10XP
Zadkiel +5XP
Aar +5XP
Lorrias +10XP
Hyln +10XP
Knives +10XP

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Hyxhuathil Briefing pt. 8

The one-armed pirate stares at the Elven wizard and makes a crushing motion with his hand. The ice shrinks back, steaming up into the air and dissipating quickly. He then walks past. The Giants all stop and watch the scene made up of tiny people unfold before them.

“You are a thieving-”
“That’s slander!” Kejermann interrupts, being interrupted himself by spectral claws of white-hot anger piercing through his shoulder. “Argh, you bleeding son of a-”
“It’s less than you deserve, sneakthief! Thank you, Tabaxi. If I knew your name, I’d thank it in my nightly’s.” The pirate climbs aboard the wagon and begins to bind the hands of the Svirfneblin with rope. He then roots through the wagon and grabs the crystal. Elated, he holds it above his head and watches the light shine through it… his face falls as it turns quickly to sand and falls through his fingers.

Kejermann laughs aloud. “You followed me all the way here… and you didn’t intercept the gemstone already? Bwahahahahaha!” He struggles to maintain his footing as he laughs uncontrollably. The joke is lost on most everyone else.
“You… handed it off?” Halfdan snarls, leering over his shoulder at the bound man.
“Of course I did. I wouldn’t want to keep my hand on real hot merchandise for longer than I have to. Selling on the fakes for a few weeks while my reputation for having it does the rounds, however, that’s something worth the risk… and the wounds… heh.” He winces as Knives flexes his claws in the wound.

Halfdan roars, jumps down from the wagon and slowly marches out of the village.

What do you do?

Hexfang +10XP
Gemscale +10XP
Zadkiel +10XP
Aar +5XP
Lorrias +10XP
Hyln +10XP
Knives +15XP

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Going Green pt. 2

Faal approaches the Svirfneblin and greets him, quickly advising him that his coin-purse has been lifted by a thief.
“Sorry friend, he ran that way.” he says, pointing down the street.
The man eyes Faal suspiciously. “How do I know you’re not trying to throw me off the scent? It’s what I’d do!” He then pulls a knife on the well-meaning Elfblood. His voice is grating and harsh, like someone who has spent too long amongst soot and liquor.
“Easy now… How about I leave you to it?”
“I’m not sure I want to let you leave, now. You have my purse!”
A guard approaches, but a friend of the victim puts his arm around him and whispers to him. The pair assure the guard there is no problem and make their exit down a side street.

Faal shakes his head and frowns. ‘Not a pleasant place, I’ll make my stop here short.’ he thinks to himself.
He asks one of the guards for directions to the nearest inn and if there are any temples in the area, learning that there is a temple to the Taihun in the Northwest, and a local shrine to the Northeast, nestled into the mountainside. Heading for the Inn, he settle into the adjoining bar and listens for a while. He then begins to engage a few Orcs and travellers in conversation, hearing of the comings and goings of the city and places nearby.

Faal hears many rumours of varying degrees of interest, mostly personal grievances between citizens. However, he learns of a potential coup by an orc named Grolak, a mysterious ‘Overseer’ to the North guarded by giants and subterranean monsters, and another story lays bare the plight of an unlucky Half-Elf that recently passed through the city. He was performing a task for the chief of Gorgek (the city Faal is in), a person whose name is never mentioned, and at the last hurdle, just as he was about to present the magical gemstone to the chief, a plucky Svirfneblin named Kejermann, apparently a folk hero around these parts, swiped it from him and took off over the hills like a wild buck. This was days ago, perhaps a week or so, but already it has become a local legend.

As the day begins to turn to afternoon, the rumour-well runs dry. The two Svrifneblin from earlier pass by an open window, but appear not to notice the Elfblood traveller.

What do you do?

Faal +15XP

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On the Road At Last pt. 4

“Oh, we are taking the coffin and body with us,” Nix calls over her shoulder, overhearing the barkeeps question.

She then hastily begins rounding up the rest of the dwarves and wagons, and begins organizing; trying not to micromanage the situation, but not doing a good job of it.
She wanders through the caravan and checks that helmet straps are tight, food provisions stored securely, and horses well fed.

Upon reaching the head of the caravan again, she looks to each of her companions. “Last chance for all of you to come along to the citadel. Things are brewing there and I’d be willing to wager that damn elf, Geran, went back there, dragon or not. Are we ready? Oh no, no, you have to center the load or you’ll tip the wagon over!” The wagon shakes and stabalises, the two dwarves realising that their beer-barrel exploits are being noticed. This seems to remind Nix of something. “Oh shoot! Hold on I have to go get my things from upstairs. Zook, Ella or Breena usually help me with those sorts of things. Oh how I miss them. And you’ll all get to meet the family! Oh come on… I’m hurrying. Be right there. DONT LEAVE WITHOUT ME!” She calls out, running back to the room to retrieve the last few things that she left out. A quill and ink. Some parchment. A quick fixing of her hair.

Ero looks to Chriswin as a puppy he must give back to its rightful owner.
“Well, there’s no one left for you to guard. I guess it’s time for you to go now. You be a good boy now, and help take care of the farm…”
He tries gives the dwarf a scratch behind the ears, eliciting a quick batting away of his hand and a dirty look. Chriswin moves to sit near Erik.
Undistrubed, Ero moves on to speak to Ezra. “I suppose I’ll go on with Ezra,” he says, “and I’ll take Simon with me. Unless we’re still building an army. Is that still the plan?” He looks around for Darrin to answer, but cannot find him.

Adrik emerges from the outskirts of the hamlet as the last of the wagons are packing up and a check on the party is being conducted. He goes quietly to Lorawyn and Theodore, letting them know that last night, Darrin wandered off. After a sort time and he didn’t return, Adrik followed. Eventually, a few miles out of the village, Adrik caught up to him and found him being swarmed by Goblins and taken into a cave. He was too far to help out straight away, and chose to return to gather help.

“Well, someone has to go get him. And I suppose the more people that go, the easier it’ll be.” Theodore says.

Nix returns breathlessly. She sees Adrik, and remembers that she hadn’t seen him. Ero approaches this group, and a sour cloud of concern hovers over them. Nix gets closer, and manages to pick up that Darrin has been taken. She turns and shouts. “Dwarves, there is no time to waste, we must make it to the Citadel of Uril. Carry on toward the destination. I will ride through the night to catch you If I must.” She looks frustrated beyond the fury of a nighthag. She stomps towards the Inn. “HORSES! HOW MUCH FOR YOUR HORSES?” Under her breath she is speaking Gnomish very quickly, but you get the sense that you can catch the drift of what she is saying. Her arms wave in the air every once in a while.
The bar staff looks at her, shrugs and shakes their head. “We… we don’t have any horses or stables. We’re a waytown; the nearest village with horses is a half-day west.”

The 6-hour walk west does take Nix closer to Darrin, but it’s a long foot travel. Erik decides to instead take one escort wagon to this village with Nix and company in tow. The village is similarly small, comprising of only a farmhouse, a few large barns and sheds, and a silo. The wagon is greeted by a farmhand on the road who promptly runs to one of the barns that functions as their stables and gathers enough horses for everyone plus two spare. While the distance isn’t far, cycling the horses out as the group rides is recommended.

Erik bids the party good luck, returns to the waytown and tries to catch up to the rest of the caravan. Everyone else turns north and immediately rides to where Adrik found the Goblins taking Darrin. The cave is visible. It is still daylight, only being halfway through the afternoon by this point. The cavemouth sits amongst a craggy valley, small in size, and surrounded by hills. It’s a wonder the place isn’t flooded everytime it rains.

On the way to the cave, Theodore admires his new breastplate. He absently moves his finger over the button that transforms it, but doesn’t press it. He thinks back to his duel with Talison. The pair were brave and valiant, Theodore thought. As Talison drew his Greatsword and held it aloft, it quickly became clear that the inside of the tavern was not going to suffice. Outside in the cool air, the Dwarves surrounded and cheered on from the sidelines.
With sword and shield drawn, Theodore dashed forward and leaped a few feet in the air, holding his shield in front of him until the last minute, stabbing forward with his blade. Talison feigned left, raised his sword and as Theodore landed, he raised his shield to the crushing blow. The shock reverberated through his arm. It hurt badly. But the two leaped back, gripped their weapons hard and charged at each other, smiles curling at the edges of their wide barbaric yawps. They seemed to be enjoying the fight more than they anticipated. Theodore drops to the ground and skids about a foot as Talison struggles to stop his own momentum and charges past him. The Human then pushes himself up, throws his shield to Talison’s right and as the Elfblood swings to bat the shield away, Theodore takes advantage of the opening and strikes the flat of his blade hard against Talison’s ribcage. It bruised through the armour immediately and the Elfblood took a knee. The crowd erupted into cheers which quickly died down when they realised the fight was over.

Theodore takes in a deep breath as he returns from the memory, and moves his hand to the dagger he also picked up that evening. The little girl by Kain’s side stares at the sheathed blade, fixated by it.

What do you do?

Who went with Nix and the Druids? Who went to the Citadel?

Talison +20XP
Nix +15XP
Darrin +5XP
Ero +15XP
Ezra +10XP
Adrik +5XP
Lorawyn +5XP
Theodore +20XP
Kain +5XP

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Haunted Fishing Village pt. 5

Eri prods the imp with her quarter staff and snarls “Speak Common!”
[In Infernal] “I know what she says, but I cannot find that tongue! Make her stop!!”
Ouriana gently reaches out and wraps her clawed fingers around the staff firmly, just to stop the prodding. “He cannot, but I will gladly translate.” Eri meets Ouriana’s eyes, “… Very well…”

[In Infernal] “What more does the scaly one want? I tell you of Beghazul, and he will slay me! I do not, you will slay me!”
Ouriana turns back to the imp, continuing to speak in Common. “We are not going to kill you, so be silent!” She looks back to her new friend. “I have a mind to meet his master, what say you?” Her red eyes glistening with curiosity.
“I agree, I dislike being considered dinner and want to set the record straight.”
[In Infernal] “Beghazul is far away! I can not take you to him! Please, release me and let me leave! The scale-ed one frightens me!”
Ouriana looks down at the Imp, and speaking in a deep, menacing growl: [In Infernal] “Tell me where I can find your Master.” Her red eyes flash, seeming to catch on fire and burning as bright as the Nine Hells. The wind begins to pick up, as though the world was trembling before her.

The fear in his eyes holds for a few seconds before subsiding and being overtaken by an acceptance and resignation. A sadness settles in.
[In Infernal] “… Beghazul resides deep in the hells beneath! He uses servants like us to do his bidding! If you choose to pursue him, you will – ARGHK!” He seems to choke on something, and falls suddenly dead. A dark shadow seems to linger above him, as big as a barn door. It’s only noticed as it moves away and disappears. The evening wind blows a little harder now, a chill cutting to the bone.

Ouriana takes a deep breath and shakes her head, the burning in her eyes disappearing as she stands “Well… Fuck!” She looks over to the odd Dragonborn and sticks her hand out. “Ouriana Fletcher,” she says, her features transforming with a friendly grin.
“Erimeyoma.” The Dragonborn replies, shaking Ouriana’s hand, “What did the Imp say? Why was it here exactly, and where is it’s master?”

These questions are interrupted before they can be answered. A crack of straining wood alerts the pair to the fact that a child is watching from the roof of the tackle shop. He gasps audibly upon being spotted, and hides behind the lip of the roof. The empty house behind them gives its last few creaks, fully settled in after the odd events.

What do you do?

Erimeyoma +15XP
Ouriana +15XP

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