PREVIOUSLY: Having narrowly escaped an altercation with the priests of Razmir, the heroes commence an investigation of their own into the Razmirans and the Rangers Lament. Eventually, the heroes discover that someone else is also watching the tavern, and the heroes rush to capture the would be spy. Unfortunately, the heroes lose the fleeing man, the result of which poses more questions than answers. Eventually, the heroes return to their inn for the night, and upon rising, they learn that the council has made a decision regarding Kassen’s plea for help. After a trip through Tamran, the heroes arrive at The Forest Bounty, a feast hall at the edge of town as per the instructions from the Tamran Council. Upon arrival, the heroes are greetings by a tall, sturdy man named Reginar who directs them to Aromina whom has come personally to deliver the news. Unfortunately, the news Aromina delivers is devastating – the Mayor of Kassen’s requests for assistance has been denied. However, Aromina suggests another course of action which may lead the council to change their minds. Aromina sheds light on the happenings of the Church of Razmir and her concerns in regards to their activities. She implores them to help her with an investigation into the church’s doings by infiltrating the church. Kal bluntly refuses, whilst the others agree. Aromina says that she may be able to find another recruit to assist which may require some more delicate negotiations…
EVENTS: Armomina provides the group with directions back to the Gar’s Last Meal as the location of the person she believes could take Kal’s place during their infiltration of the Razmir Church. Armomina asks that if they are able, to return to her within the week to report their findings, and if not, she will assume the worst.
As they arrive at the inn, the same inn that they had stayed at since arriving in Tamran, they are shocked to learn that the person Aromina suggested was none other than the elf that Evarl had clashed with only two days earlier.
The meeting went as expected, with Evarl and the elven woman, now known to be Delshandra Laetanlhûn, or “Shandy” (as both Evarl and Nell had nick-named her), trading verbal blows. Delshandra accepted the letter from Armonia which explained what was required. Delshandra accepted considering that the invitation was from her half sister. She further suggested that they utilise the assistance of a young man who had only arrived in Tamran that afternoon from Kassen, and had been asking questions about the group. Delshandra then went and fetched Zevan, who had travelled cross country after delivering the Wizard Aroth Mentinjek to Holgast in Kassen.
The heroes greet their long missed friend with open arms and quickly shared their experiences since they parted at Morrie’s Farm. As the afternoon began to turn towards night, Kal and Delshandra bid the others farewell, allowing Evarl, Nell, Sam and Zevan to make their way back to the Ranger’s Lament. The plan was that Kal and Delshandra would watch and await their signal.
Upon arrival, the group notice that the Ranger’s Lament was empty, save for Rolen Oggersmith who appeared to be cleaning the bar in preparation for some event, the smell of fine food hanging in the air. The group are greeted by the burly bartender, and are advised to take a seat and the ceremony will take place soon. Nell asks after Rolen’s offer of employment from the previous day, to which he replies in the affirmative, stating that she could start the following Moonday if she so desired.
As the late afternoon turned to dusk, several other people attended the Ranger’s Lament, including several villagers, a guardsman and a young disheveled man. Sam approached this young man, and casually asked him a number of questions. The man was rude, and clearly mentally disturbed. Sam left him to his own devices, and casually watched him from across the room.
Eve had planted herself in a corner of the room to get a better vantage point as had Zevan but in the opposing corner, to keep a watchful eye on the door coming in and out of the back of the Ranger’s Lament. Nell remained with Sam, keeping note of the people who were arriving.
As night fell, Rolen closed the front door, latched it from the inside and begun setting the stage for the ceremony. Drapes were pulled, and several of the torches were snuffed out. A short time later, Evarl heard a knock on a door from somewhere in the back room, and Rolen quickly moved to the back to attend to whichever visitor had arrived. Whispering of voices could be heard from the rear, and Evarl caught a glimpse of some robed individuals standing around the kitchen area through the gap in the door as Rolen exited to continue his preparations.
As night-time engulfed Tamran, the group heard the chiming sounds of ceremonial cymbals. With that, the door to the rear room opened and several white robed acolytes entered the room spraying what appeared to be holy water and incense around the room in an attempt, Nell presumed, to ward of evil spirits and cleanse the room.
The Acolytes were shortly after followed by 2 grey robed priests who chanted a prayer in an ancient tongue unrecognisable to the others. Finally, a black robed priest entered the room in complete silence, and moved towards the podium at the front of the inn. The acolytes helped the priest to the stage. The group noted that the acolytes and priests appeared to have all of the exits covered, and that it would be difficult to escape. Suddenly, there was an overwhelming silence.
After stepping up onto the stage, the figure in the black robes turns to the audience, his face hidden behind an iron mask. With a strong voice, he calls out, “You have come here to seek the power and glory of Razmir, and I am here to tell you that he has found you worthy!”
At that, all of the other priests chant in one voice, “All praise the Living God!”
“He is proud of you,” the black-robed figure continues, “for taking this, the first of 31 steps to enlightenment, the path of righteousness, the stairs to power and glory. Razmir is the one true god. What other god so richly rewards those who follow him? What other god lives among his people, guiding them with his wisdom and his might? What other god can lead you to true salvation? None of them! Only Razmir can offer you the power, the fortune, and the glory that you desire. Will you join him?”
The black robed priest then folded his arms and waited for an answer. Many in the room yelled praises or affirmed their willingness to give themselves to Razmir. Nell, Sam and Zevan all pledged themselves, whilst Evarl was more reluctant. The lead priest then publicly questioned the young elf further until she at least agreed to hear what the priest had to say.
The priest then continued a sermon, preaching to the people in attendance, and finally offering food and drink to solidify Razmir’s offering of charity to the people of Tamran. With that, Rolen and another of the priests appeared from the rear room. Eve however noted that by her count, there was one larger priest who had not yet appeared. This made her more wary.
Eventually all patrons were served food, and all of the heroes bar Evarl and Nell appeared to take part. Evarl refused to eat completely, whilst Nell pretended to consume, moving much of the food that was on her plate to Sam’s who she believed would be less affected if the food was poisoned.
It was not long before the effects of the food took hold. Several of the villagers were the first to collapse, followed soon after by the young disturbed man, then Sam and Zevan. Nell faked her collapse, hoping that she would be able to remain conscious and see what they would do with them. Evarl defied the request for the priest to eat. Evarl noted all the people asleep and then confronted the lead priest. Evarl thought trickery would be the best employ, and so stated that he was interested in the “tricks” that the “church” was employing, and wanted to join for that reason, not a sense of honour to Razmir. It was clear that the priest would be unable to convince the elf, so instead he threatened the life of his friend Nell, in an attempt to force him to eat. The elf refused, telling the priest to kill the red haired woman as she meant nothing to him. Evarl was clearly hoping that the bluff would work against the clearly more experienced priest. Nell felt the blade at the base of her skull, but remained still. Evarl could not bear to be responsible for his friend’s death – it was going to be a battle of wills – and battle that Evarl was sure to lose. Evarl raised his hands, allowing the priest this victory. Evarl then saw some of the priests moving the unconscious bodies into the back room. No wishing to be knocked unconscious, Evarl convinced the priest to hoodwink him instead. With that, the large burly priest exited from the back of the inn, and placed a sack over Evarl’s head.
The patrons, including Evarl, Nell, Sam and Zevan were taken down into an underground tunnel and placed in a group of underground cells. Where they were, was anyone’s guess, but Nell, who was still successfully faking being unconscious, believed them to be directly under the Temple of Razmir…
PREVIOUSLY: The heroes arrived in Tamran and after meeting with a shady elvish assassin, they obtained lodgings at the riverside inn of Gar’s Last Meal. The following day, the heroes made their way to the Tamran Council to deliver the letter their had received from Mayor Uptal in Kassen seeking assistance from the council. There, the heroes met with Speaker of the Leaves Speaker Mayslen Torgun. The heroes also asked to speak with the Speaker of the Heart, to which they were then introduced to Speaker Aromina Yasgon. The heroes presented their plights, and their adventures thus far, including their run in with the Molthuni Privateers. The heroes were rewarded for their deeds, and advised that their response would be provided the following day. In the meantime, the heroes then ventured to a placed called the Rangers Lament, a place eluded to in a note the heroes had found in Kassen’s Crypt. Before entering the tavern, the heroes happened across a sermon being conducted on the steps of the Church of Razmir, located directly across the road from the tavern. Interested in what they had to say, Sam moved in for closer observation, whilst Evarl worked the crowd. Nell and Kal however remained behind the crowd to observe the happenings for a discrete distance. Evarl spotted one of the priests, who was moving through the crowd, steal from Sam. Evarl accused the man of theft, and the lead priest started making his way towards the commotion…
Surrounded by a somewhat bewildered crowd of onlookers, Evarl stood ready to battle, as Sam had a hold of the young Priest whom has supposedly stolen from him. The Senior Priest of the Razmirian Church had by this stage made his way through the crowd and had stopped in front of Evarl. Meanwhile four of the city guards moved into the crowd in order to dismantle the situation, whilst Kal and Nell, still situated on the outskirts, prepared for a battle. The Senior Priest called to the crowd for calm, and spoke directly with the younger Priest.
The Senior Priest asked his younger clergyman to empty his pockets. Evarl called for others in the crowd to checks theirs as well and was surprised that many did as she asked. The younger priest reached into his pocket and revealed a small pouch originally in Sam‘s possession. Several members of the crowd also claimed that they had been stolen from. The Priest handed the pouch to the Lead Priest, along with several; other items of value, holding his head in shame as he did so. The Senior Priest turned to the crowd stating that even members of his own church were not immune to the meddling ways of the other false gods. He posed a series of questions for the crowd to contemplate after which he turned his attention to Evarl. He touched the young elf on the shoulder while motioning for the younger acolytes to take the thieving priest into custody. The Senior Priest apologized to the young elf for the misunderstanding and for his clergyman’s behaviour. He also directed his apology to Sam and returned the pouch containing approximately 80gp. The Lead Priest encouraged both Evarl and Sam to visit their next sermon at the square, and not be swayed from the teachings of Razmir because of one confused man’s intent. The Lead Priest then bowed, and promptly left with the acolytes in tow. As the Lead Priest and the other younger priest who had also been working the crowd reached the top of the stairs, Kal stepped forward giving praise to Erastil, and shed holy warmth across the crowd (burst). Some members of the crowd turned their attentions to Kal, asking for forgiveness, whilst others seemed even more bewildered. The younger priest pointed out Kal to the Lead Priest, at which time the Lead Priest bowed in Kal‘s direction before turning his back and walking inside the temple.
With the Razmiran Priests back in their temple, and the crowd dispersing, the heroes regroup to discuss their next move. After a brief discussion, the heroes decide to venture into the Ranger’s Lament to continue their investigation. Evarl, in the meantime suggests she check out the back and scope out the surrounds.
Kal, Nell and Sam entered the tavern which appears to be somewhat slow for this time of day. Kal took a seat at a nearby table to distance himself from the other two, while Nell and Sam went to the bar to speak with the barkeeper. There they meet with a somewhat placid but friendly man named Rolen Oggersmith. He explains that things were going well for the bar. With that, he openly charged the heroes at least double the price for ale. Nell continued speaking with Rolen, offering several more gold pieces than were necessary in an attempt to loosen his lips. The tactic failed, but appeared to make an impression as at one stage Rolen offered Nell a job due to her skills that she learned behind the bar at Kassen. Sam downed several drinks but managed to remain sober for the time being.
Meanwhile Evarl made her way around the building and was confronted by two guards who recognised her from the altercation with the priests earlier. Evarl explained that it was a misunderstanding and sweet-talked one of the guards to join her for a drink. The guard and Evarl then made their way to the front of the Ranger’s Lament. Once inside, the young elf assisted the guard to get drunk, which unfortunately revealed little other than he claimed that the businesses in the area paid the guards well to keep an eye on things.
Kal and the others attempted to find out further information about recent jobs on offer that were being advertised at the tavern, in particular the job offers which lead the mercenaries to venture to Kassen’s Crypt. The guard and the the barkeeper both remain silent but did mention a Kobold issue in the outskirts of town, which they think may somehow involve a Dragon. The heroes then notice a flyer near the front door asking for assistance with a neighbouring dragon with a reward of 1gp per Kobold killed.
As the afternoon progressed, Kal learned from a local fisherman that he recalled a job being called for a couple of months back. He claimed it was seeking the assistance of more mercenary types for a job up north. He claimed that he thought he saw several of them return a little over a week ago, and each one appeared a lot worse for ware. The fisherman explained that he knew little else and soon after left. The heroes also notice during this time that the bar is emptying as the afternoon progresses, rather than getting busier, which would be the norm for a tavern of this type. As darkness approached, Rolen calls last drinks and ushers the heroes outside, along with the remaining patrons. As they leave, he offers Nell a more full time position if she was interested. Nell says she will consider the offer.
Once outside, the heroes again discuss their next plan. Evarl suggests that she monitor the tavern from the roof top of a nearby business whilst the Kal, Nell, and Sam remain nearby in case the plan is foiled or if Evarl is spotted. Sam suggests they wait at a small tavern nearby that he spotted on the way to the Ranger’s Lament, which appeared much busier and would make a good place to remain inconspicuous. The group agree and set up for the night.
During the evening, Evarl noticed that at about 8 o’clock, Rolen closes all the shutters in the tavern, but remained working inside for a time. About 2 hours later, she notices Rolen exited the tavern and lock up for the night. Evarl observes nothing else until she realise the tavern was also being kept under surveillance by another person who appeared to be hiding behind a chimney a little down the street. Evarl attempted to quietly spring from the roof to get a better look at the person.
Meanwhile, Sam, who was enjoying taking turns monitoring Evarl‘s position, observed a flash of someone running across the road, and yelled out, “Eve?” Sam’s somewhat loud whisper gave away Evarl‘s position, and the person who Evarl was trying to intercept, fled the scene. As Evarl increased her pace, with Sam not far behind, she came face to face with a group of street thugs in a back alley – all of whom were clearly waiting for trouble. Sam in the meantime had called out to Kal and Nell, both of whom discarded their drinks and attempted to join the chase.
The gang dropped what they were doing and immediately threatened Evarl. Evarl, wanting to continue the chase rather than be dealing with a bunch of misguided miscreants, tried to claim that she was chasing someone who had over a 100 of her gold, and they could have some of it if they caught him. Clearly Evarl was less than convincing, even after Sam barreled around the corner in hot pursuit. It was a stand off, until Nell and Kal arrived. Using her seductive charm, Nell explained that she and her friends were part of their crew, and that they best let them through. The gang allowed the heroes through, although what “crew” Nell was speaking of seemed to be a mystery. Either that, or the thugs were somehow bewildered with Nell’s beauty.
As the four hastily ran down the alleyway, they came to a pathway which was blocked but recently disturbed. Evarl was the first to bound over the blocked pathway, closely followed by the others.
Further around another bend, the heroes were confronted with a tall fence with barbed wire at the top. Evarl and Nell seemed to climb the fence without difficulty in order to continue the chase, however Sam and Kal had more issues with transversing the obstacle. Eventually, Kal boosted Sam over the fence to continue the pursuit.
Meanwhile, Evarl and Nell got sight of their target after making their way through a construction site as the cloaked figure made his way into a slum area. Unfortunately this was the last they saw of their quarry. Kal and Sam soon joined their search, but were unable to locate the shadowy spy. Kal then observed the thugs they had encountered earlier who were making their way towards the heroes. It was quickly decided it best they return to Gar’s Last Meal to rest for the evening.
The heroes return to Gar’s Last Meal and upon rising the following morning, late due to the heroes activities the previous evening, the heroes are greeted with a fine meal cooked by Puglas himself. The meal was presented by his daughter Melanie whom Sam had been admiring since their arrival in Tamran. Melanie presented the heroes with a letter, sealed with the symbol of the Tamran Council. Kal opened the letter, and read that they were to meet Speaker Aromina Yasgon at the Forest Bounty on the outskirts of town where she would be able to deliver the news of the council’s decision at midday.
The heroes prepare and obtain directions from Puglas before heading out into Tamran. After an hour, or so, the heroes arrive at the [[The Forest Bounty | Forest Bounty] and find a large feast hall, bustling with activity. They are approached by a tall man who Evarl recognises as the man they were chasing the previous evening. He introduces himself as Reginar Lacklan, aide to Speaker Yasgon and escorts them to where Speaker Yasgon was seated.
Firstly Aromina delivers the devastating news – the Mayor Uptal’s requests for assistance had been denied by the council. However, Aromina suggests another course of action which may lead the council to change their minds.
Aromina explains that she is just as concerned about the Razmirans in Tamran as the heroes are with the Razmiran’s involvement in what occurred in the crypt. Aromina claims that she has been building a case for some time against the Razmirans, but that every time she has attempted to get to the bottom of their scheme, she comes to a dead end. She admits that the brutal nature of the Razmiran ways has either seen her agents disappear having infiltrated the Razmiran’s compound, or that they have been found floating face down a few days later at the mouth of the Marideth River. Most of the deaths have been blamed on Molthuni spies, and Aromina has struggled to keep a lid on her investigation, in particular since she believes that Razmiran’s may be making an attempt to influence the Tamran Council itself, especially as her investigation seems to lead to Speaker Mayslen Torgun.
Aromina says that the “cult” of Razmir first appeared in Tamran about 2 years ago, as a small band of missionaries. They soon raised the funds to build a temple, which was constructed over a year ago. Their power and influence in the city have grown ever since, and the local guards seem to give them no heed, even going so far as to dismiss any reports of their foul practices. Aromina suspects through corruption that the city guards help protect the temple, watching out for thieves and intruders.
Kal then explained that they learned from a fisherman that a group of mercenaries were employed by someone to head up north a few months ago and returned just over a week ago minus a few of their number.
Reginar confirms this and adds that he had observed that when the group arrived, they hurried back to the temple all under the cover of darkness. Less than two days later another group, this one led by a female cultist in blue robes, left the temple and boarded a boat. He thinks this might be the temple’s leader, but he cannot be sure. Evarl asked for a description of the woman to which Reginar obliged. Based on the description, Evarl suggests that it sounds like Iramine.
Her findings were such that members of the cult go out frequently to aid the poor and proselytize, however she suspects this is just a cover for their more illegal activities, such as thievery, blackmail, and extortion. She claims that her agents have seen the Razmiran Priests beat a man to within an inch of his life, claiming the humble cobbler stole from the temple, while the city guards merely watched the event and took no action. The heroes confirm these claims, stating that they had seen some of those things the previous day whilst watching the temple, and its neighbour, The Rangers Lament.
Reginar adds that from his observations, members of the faith heavily guard the temple itself day and night. He claims that the priests hold no public services, other than the ones held on the front steps of the temple, so the only real way in is to join their religion. Aromina adds that her agents have established that the Razmirans interview applicants at the Ranger’s Lament every Fireday.
As a result, Aromina implores them to help her with an investigation into the church’s doings by infiltrating the church, going so far as to offer her own gold to fund an expedition to Kassen. Kal bluntly refuses to assist, claiming that pretending to be a priest of another church, little less an evil one, would be against his beliefs. Kal however does encourage the others to try. Evarl, Nell and Sam agree. Aromina says that she may be able to find another recruit to assist which may require some more delicate negotiations…
PREVIOUSLY: The heroes continued their investigation into the substances located under the ancient Dryad tree which revealed little other than the culprit was a pale skinned gnome. From the descriptions provided by the magic shop owner however, the gnome was suffering from the bleaching. During the investigation, the heroes’ investigations flushed out a Molthune spy who they apprehended and brought before the authorities. The heroes were rewarded for their good deeds, and soon after left Three Pines Ford behind. As their journey continued, the heroes along with the crew of the Black Mist were forced to deal with a ferocious storm. Having survived the ordeal, the heroes continued onto the last leg of their journey to Tamran. Shortly before arriving in the city, the Black Mist was set upon by Molthuni Privateers. The heroes fought bravely, and thwarted the Molthuni plan. Now armed with the heads of several of the Molthuni sailors, the captured letter of marquee and several documents detailing Molthuni attack plans, the heroes make their way into the Tamran Harbour to continue their quest to seek aide for their hometown of Kassen…
The heroes arrive under the cover of darkness, and moor the Black Mist on one of the many jetties which dot the harbour. Captain Walren thanks the heroes for their assistance and recommends that they visit the council chambers in the morning with the informant they obtained from the Molthuni Privateer vessel. The captain also recommends they stay at an inn called Gar’s Last Meal and provides them with directions. The heroes farewell Captain Walren but not before he lets them know that should they need his services, he owes them a debt of gratitude.
The heroes then make their way to the inn. Cautiously, the four make a plan to enter the inn. Evarl states that she will move to the rear of the establishment and scope for any unusual behaviour, whilst the the other three enter via the front door.
Inside, the heroes find nothing but pleasant talk and run-of-the-mill sailors telling tall tales, including that of the inn-keep who regales a story to a bunch of younger fisherman about how he managed to lose his arm to the giant sizes Gar Fish who’s stuffed remains rest quietly about the bar. The heroes separate and start conversing with the locals. Nell, in particular, grabs the attention of some of the fishermen about her and her friend’s exploits with vanquishing a crew of Molthuni Privateers. Her stories, and her appearance, eventually grab the attention of most onlookers in the bar. This leaves Evarl with little to do other than keep a watchful eye on people coming and going from the bar. Meanwhile Sam and Kal scope out the bar and listen to the inn-keeper’s story. Eventually, after learning very little other than the people in the tavern appear to be happy fisherman and sailors, and little more, Nell negotiates with the inn-keeper, Puglas Tamall for food and lodgings. The group make themselves comfortable and quench their thirst and hunger in a nearby booth, whilst Evarl continues to keep a watchful eye on the door from nearby.
During supper, Evarl observes a female elf dressed in dark leather clothing with 2 blades across her back enter the front door and make her way upstairs. Evarl excuses herself and moves through the crowd to follow the stranger. As she begins to make her way up the stairs, she is knocked out of the way by a heavy-set half-orc carrying what appears to be two jars of a bubbling liquid. The half orc barreled down the stairs and through the main doors, before a flash can be seen in the main street. Kal sees the half orc, and asks one of the waitresses who that was. The barkeep overhears the question and say that it was Mila, a female half-orc that has been told one too many times not to mess around with her experiments in her room.
Meanwhile Evarl continued her ascent up the stairs. The distraction however was enough for her to loose track of the elf. Slowly, Evarl made her way up the corridor of the lodgings, in an attempt to find the mysterious elf. As she came to the second last door, by chance, Evarl spotted a shadow from under the door. As a result, Evarl was not caught off guard, as the door burst open, a knife wielding elf standing in its archway. Evarl first attempted to trip the elf, but the elf was quicker and slashed out with her knife. The knife cut Evarl on the thigh, the pain searing through her leg. The clearly more experienced elf moved quickly, and before Evarl knew what was happening, she was on the ground, the elven female on top of her, a dagger leveled at her throat. Evarl attempted to parley with her clearly more experienced kin, but it was a useless gesture. Evarl felt the cold blade against her skin, a small trickle of blood morning its way down the side of her neck. The elf leaned in, and whispered in the the younger elf’s ear. It was a warning, to stay out of the elf’s way. Evarl agreed as the older elf stepped back and slammed the door of her room behind her.
Evarl, somewhat shaken, and furious that she had been bested, returned to the tavern to tell her friends what had occurred. Kal quickly healed Evarl of her injuries, and suggested that she do as the elf suggested, and stay away. After dinner, the four walk up to the beds, and enjoy their evening’s rest.
The heroes rise at dawn and venture downstairs for breakfast. Puglas prepares their breakfast which allows the heroes to ask a few questions. Puglas explains that there is very little going on in Tamran at the moment, other than the ongoing war with the Mothuni. When asked about the council, Puglas explains that given it was Oathday, the timing was perfect for the heroes to present their findings to the council. Puglas also offers directions to the Rangers Lament although mentions that it is not as nice an establishment as his own. Evarl also asks Puglas about the elf, to which Puglas becomes grim, stating that her name was Enar, and that the group give her a wide birth. Kal reiterates Puglas’ warning and suggests that they make their way to the council chambers. Puglas further explains that the council are hopeless at making decisions, and that Forest Marshal Gavirk has become nothing more than a figurehead and bureaucrat. Puglas then leaves allowing the heroes to their meal. A short time later, the heroes leave and venture into the city.
The city of Tamran is a busy place indeed, and Kal mentions that he is overwhelmed given that Tamran appeared to be over 10 times the size of their small home town of Kassen. Upon arrival at the council chambers, the heroes join a line of what appear to be a mix of adventurers, fishermen, sailors and other townsfolk, all keen on gaining some favour with the council.
After many hours waiting, the heroes are ushered into a room where they meet with Speaker Mayslen Torgun, the Speaker of the Leaves. Kal mentions that they have brought word from Mayor Uptal in Kassen in the form of a letter, asking for assistance. Kal also says that their orders were to ask for Speaker Aromina Yasgon. Kal then hands over the note to the speaker. Speaker Torgun reads the message, and tells the heroes to remain in the room whilst he fetched Speaker Yasgon. A few minutes later, Speaker Torgun returns to the room, with Speaker Yasgon in tow. Speaker Yasgon then reads the letter. The heroes then present the story of their victory with the Molthuni Privateers and present the papers and evidence of their victory. Speaker Torgun becomes very interested in their story, but shows little interest when they then explain the reason for their arrival in Tamran, in particular their belief of the involvement of Razmiran followers with the theft of the amulets from the crypt, which they further believe has caused the undead uprising in an around Kassen.
After speaking at length about both events, Evarl and Nell both sense that Speaker Torgun was more interested in the Molthuni papers and the threat that posed, whilst Speaker Yasgon showed great interest in the Razmiran involvement. However, both speakers note that no decision could be made until the council met later that day. The heroes advised where they were staying and were told that a decision would be made regarding Kassen‘s fate by tomorrow. Speaker Torgun further offers a reward of 500 gold for their information about the Molthuni Privateers and offers his thanks for the bravery the heroes had shown.
The heroes then leave the council chambers and ponder their next move. After a short discussion, it is decided that the heroes make their way to the Ranger’s Lament. After travelling on foot across various bridges and walkways, they arrive at the location of where Puglas had indicated twhere the inn was. The heroes are concerned however when they seen an assembly of people outside of a large Razmiran church, situated across the road from the Ranger’s Lament. The heroes observe a masked dark cloaked Priest sprouting the virtues of Razmir to the crowd from the top stair of the temple, the assembled villagers listening intently to his preachings. The heroes’ listen for a short time, and observe four white robed masked priests standing between the crowd and the head priest, positioned in such a way to be standing on the first step of the temple. The heroes also observed two masked, grey robed priests moving through the crowd, asking for donations.
Sam, who had always shown little interest in religious teachings, was enthralled at what he heard the priest tout, which resulted in Sam moving further into the crowd to get a better look. Evarl however, was suspicious, and began making her way through the crowd as well, but more to keep an eye on the priests. Nell and Kal remained at the rear. During the sermon, Evarl noticed one of the priest’s pick several townsfolk’s pockets, including that of Sam‘s. Evarl immediately moved towards the priest and attempted to pick the item back that Sam had “lost”. Unfortunately, the priest obviously had a keen eye and was able to spot the elf’s advance. The priest pointed the tithing-box at the elf as he reached arms length away from the priest. The Priest then asked the young elf for a donation. Evarl was outraged, and accused the priest of stealing from his friend. The priest claimed it to be a false accusation, and accused Evarl of being a sinner and stealing the item himself. The head priest, from his position at the top of the stairs, further accused Evarl of misdoings, claiming that he was one of the many reason that Razmir had come to Tamran. Sam could not believe what he was hearing, and moved quickly to the priest who Evarl accused of stealing from him, with the intent of upturning the priest until his supposedly stolen property fell out. The head priest started to make his way through the crowd, his intention, to put a stop to this nonsense…
PREVIOUSLY: The heroes arrive in Three Pines Ford. After meeting with a shady elven inn-keeper, known by Evarl to be a retired assassin, the heroes come across a call for help from a druid who is keen to learn why one of the ancient three Dyrad Trees, after which the town is named, has begun to die. The druid provides a guide in the form of a fighter named Voldar Riffolk, who agrees to assist the heroes. Shortly after accepting the druid’s call for assistance, the heroes stumble across a tunnel under one of the trees. Upon investigating further, the heroes learn that the trees are being somehow magically poisoned with ritualistic necromancy, but not before being set upon by several tainted fey. After defeating the creatures, the heroes return to the druid who confirms their theory, but explains she would need to examine the site further. In the meantime, the druid suggests the heroes visit the magic shop called the Ageng and Elyelen’s Vault where some of the supplies for the evil ritual may have been purchased from…
As night fell, the heroes bid their fare-well to the druid and her assistant Voldar Riffolk, and made their way back to the Black Mist. Given the late hour, the four aimed to return to their investigations in the morning at the alchemist shop. During the evening, Evarl and Nell noticed that the ship was under surveillance by a cloaked individual. Rather than starting an incident, the heroes kept the man under close watch, but by the end of first watch, the man had disappeared.
As dawn broke, those heroes who were not on watch were awoken to the sounds and smells of cooking bacon and eggs, courtesy of the Black Mist‘s first mate, Ewem. After breakfast, the heroes made their way through the busy morning markets to the alchemists store, known as Ageng and Elyelen’s Vault. There, they met an aging female dwarf shop keeper named Ageng after whom the shop was named. Kal and Sam engaged the shopkeeper in conversation whilst Evarl and Nell looked about the store. Eve noticed that the store was well stocked, but was dusty in some areas. In a corner, in a particularly dusty section, both she and Nell noticed a rectangular shaped print indicating that something had been there recently. Meanwhile, during the discussion with the shop keeper, Kal discovered that the powder was definitely sold at the store, and that powder and wax of the kind that was found at the tree would be contained in an alchemist kit. When Kal asked if one had been sold recently, the shopkeeper became tight lipped, claiming that she may know more if a purchase of some goods was had. After sampling the store’s wares, Kal made a purchase of some Oil of Bless Weapon for 50gp, after which the the shopkeeper became more loose lipped.
The aging dwarf revealed that a pale skinned gnome had attended her shop just over a day ago, and had made a purchase of a portable alchemists kit, and points to where Evarl and Nell were examining. She further explained that the gnome said little, paid extra for the purchase of the kits, and left. Nothing else was purchased.
During the conversation with the shopkeeper, a man enters the store, remaining near the front door and examining books. Evarl noticed the man to be similar shape and build to the humanoid who had been watching the Black Mist the previous evening. Evarl slipped up next to the man without him noticing, and carefully watched his movements. Suddenly the man turned his head towards the young elf, nodded, and then bolted for the front door, dropping the book as he ran.
The man dashed across the road, with Evarl in hot pursuit. Nell and Sam following closely behind. Evarl caught the man slipping into a general store across the road, and followed. As she approached however, she heard commotion from within. As Evarl darted into the store, she noticed the shopkeeper assaulting the would-be-spy with a broom, and a tray of eggs smashed on the floor beside them. The woman was yelling for the man to get out. Evarl took advantage of the situation, and grabbed a hessian bag from the counter. Whilst the man was otherwise occupied, Evarl forced the bag over the man’s head in an attempt to drag him to the ground. The shopkeeper, an elderly woman, went to threaten Evarl, thinking that she was about to be robbed, but through fast talking, Evarl convinced the woman her that she was there to apprehend the would-be criminal.
Nell remained on the roadway, as Sam dashed across the road to join Evarl in the store. Kal and the dwarven store owner joined Nell on the street to see what was going on. Suddenly from around the corner, three guards barreling towards the direction of the disturbance. Nell engaged the guards in conversation, claiming that it was only her Uncle that was have a reaction of some bad stew. The guards, somewhat bedazzled by the red-haired sorcerer’s words, held their ground, seeming to believe her.
Meanwhile inside the store, the man had escaped by cutting open the bag with a concealed knife. The man spun to face his attackers, and the old shopkeeper backed away. Evarl drew her sword, and threatened the man to surrender. At that moment, Sam burst through the front door, his intimidating prowess convincing the man that surrender was a good option. Evarl quickly questioned the man, but he was more that tight lipped that the dwarven shop-keeper. With a few jarring blows from Sam‘s fists, and the fact that he saw the guards awaiting him outside, the would-be spy loosened his tongue. The man, named Ewis Arrerk, spilled the story, stating that he worked for an accountant named Andre Colton who was a spy for the Molthune Government. The man claimed that he was regularly paid by Andre to keep a watchful eye on the new-comers to the town, and report back any unusual activities. He claimed he had been tracking the heroes since they arrived, but did not expect them to be as resourceful and perceptive as they had been. When asked about the gnome, the man knew nothing, although had heard them talking about it in the magic shop.
With this confession, Evarl and Sam took the man outside and handed him over to the authorities. Nell, not wnating to be accusing of lying to the guards, and perhaps thereafter being dragged away, slunk back into the magic store until they had left. Meanwhile Evarl, Kal and Sam followed the guards back to the Three Pines Ford Keep and spoke with the Captain of the Guard. The heroes told them of the story and what the man had confessed. The heroes were commended for their efforts, and awarded 400gp as a reward for apprehending a Molthune spy.
Meanwhile Nell commenced her return to the Black Mist. Whilst making her way through the docks, Nell overheard a group of sailors claiming that they were from a ship called the Grinning Parrot and that had come from up river a few days earlier. She further heard that some were claiming that they had be haunted during their trip by what they identified as a ghouling halfling with pale skin and eyes. Nell deduced that this was a similar description of the gnome the magic shop owner had seen previously. Nell then returned to the boat and was later joined by the other three heroes. After sharing the reward for the capture of the spy, the heroes and Captain Walren’s crew prepared to set sail. Shortly before leaving, the heroes learned that the Molthune spy, who had been acting as an accountant had got wind of the situation, and had fled the town. The crew then fare-welled the town, and the Black Mist then headed off down the Tourondel River to continue its journey to Tamran.
Th third day was relatively uneventful, as the crew made their way through the mouth of the river an into Lake Encarthen. As night fell, the eerie light show of bright green and blue flashes on the horizon from the direction of what was known as the Isle of Terror haunted the heroes. This prompted Kal to seek guidance from Erastil, after which he cast a divine spell which provided him with the fore-sight to predict the oncoming weather.
The evening of the forth day saw a violent store reek havoc on the ship. Crewman Anthond Bowe was injured during the storm, and was taken below decks to rest and recover. The rest of the crew handled themselves remarkably well, gaining the praises of Captain Walren.
On the evening of the last day, approximately 2 hours out from Tamran, a mist had formed, which Kal had also predicted, which blocked the way into Tamran‘s bay. Captain Waldren was wary, and readied everyone, except crewman Bowe who was still unwell, for battle. Evarl was the first to spot the ambush, a cutter vessel flying a Molthune Privateer flag came into view.
Evarl warned the crew, and Nell yelled out, claiming that the Black Mist was a plague ship, and not to come closer. Evarl could clearly see the crew of the incoming vessel, who comprised of seven soldiers, and a Captain. Evarl confirmed that Nell’s plan appeared to have worked, as most of the men aboard the vessel appeared uneasy. However, instead of the ship moving away, the Molthuni Captain yelled for his men to burn the boat. With that, two alchemist’s fires were thrown at the ship. Evarl and Sam were quick enough to move to a position where the containers would land. Evarl caught the first, but Sam was not nimble enough, the flask slipping through his fingers, and the contents smashing on the ground under him. The explosion engulfed the young warrior, however the discharge was not as bad as he first though although he was now covered in partially flaming goo.
However, Nell‘s distraction was enough to allow her to unleash a burning hands spell, across the middle section of the Molthuni ship, which caused the deaths of several of the Molthuni crewmen. Ewem flung a spear in the direction of another crewman, which collected the sailor in the chest, sending him skittering across the deck. Several of the sailors attempted to swing across to the Black Mist, with two reaching their intended target, and another making it only to the side rail. Evarl took it upon herself to deal with this poor sap, while Nell stepped back to again flame the advancing sailors. Meanwhile, the Molthuni Captain had swung across the stern of the ship to engage Captain Walren himself in combat. The two traded blows, but clearly the aged dwarven captain was no match for the much younger Molthuni. Kal quickly cast a spell on Sam to further protect him in the fight, as Sam raced to protect Captain Waldren. Several of the sailors continued their advance, with Ewen receiving several severe wounds from Molthuni blades. But the attacks were not enough to sway the Kellid’s respove to protect his ship, and with the assistance of Kal, and Nell‘s magic missile spells from her wand, two of the would be pirates fell. Sam bravely defended Captain Walren, and soon after beheaded the Molthuni Captain. Having seen his captain beheaded, the last surviving privateer jumped into the shadowy depths of Lake Encarthen.
The heroes initially considered taking possession of the Molthuni ship, but upon further inspection found that it was heavily damaged, and not just from the fire caused by Nell’s spell, but because it had been neglected and severely damaged through attacks from other vessels. The heroes, after some suggestions from Captain Walren, cleared the ship of its cargo and supplies, and sent the boat to the depths of Lake Encarthen.
During the search, a locked safe was located, the contents of which were a small treasure of coins, a magical feather token, and a letter of marquee from the Molthuni Government. Also found board were supplies, and a series of military orders pertaining to ship movements in the area. Captain Walren informed the heroes that this would be an advantage as they would be able to claim several rewards for the recovery of those documents, and for the heads of the Mothuni Privateers from the Tamran council.
With that, the heroes and the crew of the Black Mist continued on their journey, and soon after arrived at Tamran…
PREVIOUSLY: The heroes race into the forest near Morrie’s Farm in an attempt to track down the remaining orcs and their possible leader, a young mage named Aroth Mentinjek. It is not long that they discover the camp and set about to attack. After a harrowing battle, the orc leader, Zulgha Bloodbone lay dead at Sam‘s feat, while Evarl grappled the young mage to the ground to answer for his crimes. As the dust settled, the mage explained the misunderstanding, all caused by him using a charm spell on the unsuspecting orc leader. This lead to a chain of events whereby the orc leader thought the young mage wanted the owner of Morrie’s Farm’s daughter, Jessika as his bride. The heroes soon after returned to the farm, and after a short rest over-night, continued their journey down the river towards their final destination of Tamran…
The heroes arrive in Three Pines Ford. Captain Walren advises them to follow his lead as he introduces them to harbour master Braffolk Gysby. The talk slender gentleman is quick to explain the need for calm in the town and although stern is pleasant to the heroes, encouraging them to stay.
As dusk was well underway, Sam was the first to mention his thirst and asked the others where the closest pub was. Evarl, who had formerly travelled the area, mentioned the Sly Harlequin, an inn nearby to the docks which, although somewhat unsavoury, could be a good place to learn more information and gain an ale. Before leaving, Kal asks the harbourmaster whom should the heroes should tell about an orc attack they witnessed recently. The harbourmaster thanks them for the information, but states it would be better delivered to Lieutenant Boarhelm in The Keep. Eve volunteers to do that, after she guides the heroes to the inn.
Whilst making their way there, Evarl explains that he plans to introduce the rest of the party to the elven proprietor named La’Slaan, whom he explains is a retired assassin, and then afterwards will go to the keep to offer information about the orcs that attacked Morrie’s Farm. The others agree, and they soon arrive.
The Inn is in full swing, with many of the dock workers and proprietors finished for the day. It is not long after the heroes enter that they greeted by the softly spoken and far from talkative La’Slaan. Evarl explains to La’Slaan about what had happened in Kassen, and why they were in Three Pines Ford. It is not long before Evarl realises that without speaking a word, he had perhaps revealed too much. La’Slaan thanks them for stopping by, and offers them a free ale, after which she disappears to mingle with the crowd. As the drinks arrived, Evarl checks to ensure the drinks were not poisoned, to which they were not.
Whilst drinking the somewhat putrid brew, Sam spots a sign asking for assistance. The signs was completed by a local druid, who is offering a substantial amount of gold for further assistance. Knowing that any leads at the inn may have dried up, the heroes grab the flyer and make their was to the Herbalist’s shop called Wolfmourne’s Elixirs & Herbs.
Upon arrival they are greeted by it proprietor, a middle-aged half-elven woman named An’lau Wolfmourne. An’lau explained that she had recently discovered that one of the ancient Dryad trees was dying and that she could not explain why. She states that she was in the middle of concocting an Elixir to use on the trees, but would like assistance with identifying the cause. The heroes accept her call for assistance, to which she then offers the guide of her employee Voldar Riffolk.
Voldar looked clearly out of place pruning flowers and the like for An’lau. En-route to the Dryad Grove, he explained that he had lost a couple of gambling debts and was faced with having to sell his precious swords to make ends meet. Voldar explained that An’lau was nice enough to take him on, but it was the swing of his sword that he missed most.
As the heroes arrived, they examined the area. Sam took to making an attempt to talk to the trees, at one stage stabbing the ground beneath the tree. This action produced a thick foul smelling oil like substance coming from the ground, like the ground was somehow bleeding. Kal and Nell examined the magic properties of the area and the trees, establishing that the trees had somehow been magically affected with some type of necromantic effect and also poisoned. Nell suggested that it was cursed perhaps similar to the trees in Southern Fangwood, but could not back up her theory. The two also learned that the trees were free from disease, proving that it was not a naturally occurring effect. Evarl and Voldar looked around the area and found a depression in the ground approximately 50 feet from the tree itself. A closer examination showed that it was perhaps a sinkhole of some kind, caused by something burying under the ground.
The heroes moved to examine Evarl‘s find. Sam searched the area for a fallen branch in order to prod the hole to see if it would collapse. Soon after, the hole collapsed revealing a sink-hole leading some 20 feet beneath the surface. One by one, the heroes disappeared down the hole, with Sam lowing each down, before lowering himself.
Inside the tunnel, the heroes discovered that its creation was only recent but was completed by unknown means. Evarl identified that was last used only recently. Upon moving down further, Kal and Evarl discovered that at the end of a tunnel lead directly towards the tree, and ended in what appeared to be a small room. The tunnel and room were somewhat cramped, but Evarl spotted tiny footprints similar to that of a small humanoid such as a halfling, goblin or gnome. It was Voldar who correctly identified the tracks as that belonging to a gnome.
Kal meanwhile discovered what appeared to be a makeshift alter standing close the the tree root system. The alter appeared to have been recently used and had remnants of a red powder and a purple wax.
As the heroes examine the room, five creatures emerge from the brambles. Having been under the employ of An’lau, Voldar had learned a thing or two about Fey creatures and quickly identified the larger creatures as a Debased Dryad and the smaller ones as Twig Blights.
The fey creatures caught all by Evarl by surprise, the Debased Dryad ensnaring them all in an entangle spell. The heroes fought valiantly, and eventually eliminated the threat. At the end of the battle, Kal was the worst for ware, having been poisoned by the scratches from the Twig Blights.
Upon closer examination of the area, Evarl discovered that the red powder and wax were placed specifically in a pattern of some sort. Kal identified its placement as some type of religious ritual. The exact purpose remained a mystery to the heroes, and after taking some sample, they returned to report their findings to the the druid An’lau.
The heroes arrived back at the town at night and took up with An’lau in her shop as she was packing up for the night. The heroes provided An’lau with the samples they had found, and she identified them as being spell components of a type of ritual. She would examine what the heroes had found later the following morning, but stated that the only place items like the powder and wax could only be sold at Ageng and Elyelen’s Vault, a magic shop in the middle of town.
An’lau explained that the store was named after Ageng and Elyelen Dankwater, after two elderly dwarves, one of which, the dwarven man named Elyelen, had died some years back, but that Ageng his female companion, had continued on at the shop. The heroes agree that they would follow that lead and report back to her in the morning. An’lau thanked them against for their assistance, and soon after the heroes made their way back towards the harbour…