West Marches

Slavers in the Dark Wood, Part 2 [350 XP]

Lark scouts what appears to be a temple. Since the route we were taking was bad, she volunteered to scout out a better one. Lagran agreed to go with her. They scout for a better one, when they spot a figure with a light out ahead. This turns out to be an armed and armored human, followed by two more people. They appear to be actively looking for someone, and are upset with their Captain for “putting up” with something, possibly a missing person.

A minute or so later, they spot another figure with a light further out in the woods. That light isn’t heading in the same direction.

Meanwhile, one of the search parties comes across the rest of the party. Combat ensues. Whitestaff and Greyson take down the first two guys, and the third runs back into the woods, but Whitestaff runs him down. As he takes the last guy down, Lark and Lagran find him.

The group takes their two living prisoners back into the woods a ways for an old-fashioned questioning. Acton, the guard, says that another member of the company, Lessen, is missing, along with one of the captives. He worked for a mercenary company hired to guard some sort of “research expedition” at the supposed temple.

We move around to the back of the complex, where Acton told us the way up was easier. The temple is old, but not ancient. It was originally dedicated to Dellad, the God of Knowledge, but it has clearly been abandoned, being only a few centuries old. Lagran thinks it may have been a library she read about once.

Lark and Whitestaff sneak towards one of the buildings. It turns out to be a crypt, probably filled with the devotees of Dellad, definitely converted from an ancient Netherese building. The entire place feels weird.

We head to one of the other buildings, and Whitestaff picks a lock. We find the remains of the old Library, but unfortunately the books appear to have all been ruined. Lagran is sad. We come across a couple of stuck doors, and then see an ugly gargoyle. That moves. Because it’s a devil. It asks us if we are escapees (which it’s ordered to capture) or intruders (which it’s ordered to kill). Whitestaff says “Escapees.” Lagran says “Neither.” After a tough fight, we kill it.

Someone was weeping behind the next door, so we decide we have to break it open. Whitestaff picks another lock, still aglow with Lagran’s approval. Lagran pulls the door open.

The giant statue of Dellad has been beheaded. A woman in robes with a couple of assistants are prepping a naked man for sacrifice. We took out the leader-woman and the acolytes in the room, but not before she managed to call her guards. Three popped in and gasped at their Mistress’s corpse. Lagran spiked the other door shut.

Among her notes is a comment that she’s running low on funds and will need to get more from “the Circle.”

We released the prisoner, who was the merchant who went missing bringing Lagran’s master’s box.

We had to leave the chain devil in the temple, since we currently have no means to either kill it or send it back home. For now, we’ve fallen back to the farmhouse to get some rest and clothes for our merchant friend.

Treasure

  • Scroll of Acid Spray
  • Scroll of True Strike
  • Potion of Healing
  • Gold Ring (25 gp)
  • Platinum Necklace (25 gp)
  • 150 GP
  • 500 SP
  • (4) 50 GP gems
  • (2) 25 GP gold collars
  • Signet ring of the House of Mundi
  • Encyclopedia on devils and the hells

The Party

DM Credit

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Slavers in the Dark Wood, Part 1 [150XP]

The party has opted to set up an ambush to catch the slavers along the Dark Road. With two weeks until showtime, we set up in the Copper Ram to discuss plans. Lagran arranges for Martell to ship the box recovered last week to her master.

In the meantime, an outlandish-looking dwarf man with a giant maul comes in and orders an ale. We end up allowing him to join us in the hunt for slavers.

Three days out on the road, we run into a Dragonborn tradesman from Carcosa. He had run into some goblins, but a single guard drove them off. He also mentioned the possibility of weather trouble.

On the fifth day, we finally reach the Dark Road and head north. We start looking for the rock shaped like a bird, to no avail. We decide to turn back, staying along the road.

While searching for our landmark, Lark comes across a simply enormous oak tree, draped with decorative jewelry-type chains from some eons past. She checks out the tree, but it appears natural.

Eventually, Lark finds a clearing with a flagstone that has a carved phoenix on it. The rest of the group joins her. There are but a few days left until the full moon. Since that’s not enough time to get to town and back, we decide to set up camp at the abandoned farm we had cleared out before.

After a few days (the highlight of this time period is a stag hunt), we head back to the flagstone’s clearing. Lagran recognizes the flagstone’s sigil from one of her books on Netheril. Lark finds a trail that gets used occasionally that leads back to the road quite a ways off and another chained tree.

Riverthorn talks to a crow, who refers to Shiny Men, Men who Smell of Beasts and Disease, and a Bear Man who hasn’t been there a while. Lark thinks the Bear Man is probably a druid.

We set up a trap. Riverthorn calls herself Smoke and pretends to be the new seller. Kirk makes like a guard, and Lagran and Whitestaff pretend to be slaves. They are really bad at it; the bad guys don’t fall for it.

After a brief fight (where Faerie Fire was a great help), we capture Abon. He refuses to talk, but we find a signet ring marking him as a Vecna worshipper. Lagran gets him to extoll on his philosophy a bit, but it’s not much helpful.

Lark and Kirk tracked Abon’s party back to what we assume is a temple.

Treasure
cloak of elven kind (Greyson)
iron lockbox (200gp)
27 gp
shields (3)
chainmail (2)
shortswords (3)

The Party

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The Adventure Begins [300 XP]

Riverthorn, Lark, Whitestaff, Lagran, and Grayson meet up at the Copper Ram. Upon spying a new job posting on the board, they headed off to the Dwarven Trade Mission to speak to Mr. Martell about it. He griped about hiring five travellers, but relented. They agreed to travel to Arrox and back (two months’ travel) looking for Fizwin the merchant for 50 gold apiece, up front.

After a pleasant evening in the Ram’s common room, we head East out of Bridgetown. Five days into the trip, we were accosted by bandits. One of the bandits was kind enough (due to the gnomish blade at his throat) to explain that his boss, “The Blade,” had been sacking caravans and holding merchants for ransom in an abandoned farm close to the road.

After some discussion, we decided to set up for an ambush. This catches the last of the bandits who accosted us, since he didn’t tell the Blade he fucked up. Therefore, we decided to check out the farm where the clueless Blade and his band holed up.

Lark checked out the farm first. The sight of a bear being baited by dogs pissed her off. We crept off towards the farm. Lark takes one out immediately. Riverthorn puts the dogs to sleep. Then the fight ensues.

We ended up defeating the Blade and most of his bandits, but his lieutenant, a woman, got away. We rescued Fizwin and a young man named Ansel, although Whitestaff and Lagran were gravely injured. Lagron recovered the box for her Master, seal intact. Lagran and Ansel said they heard the bandits talking about selling their other prisoners to someone named Abon, before the bandits took those other people away.

The Blade confirms that Abon is a slaver who meets him on the Dark Road, near a stone shaped like a bird.

We camped overnight and looted the bandits’ treasure.

The Party

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