Fellowship of the Company of the Order

The Bargain
Deals with underworld and other dark places

Red… Red all over me!

Rae’na’lís felt as if she’d come back from a very long way away. She hadn’t gone anywhere – the smell of the sewer was dank moldy proof of that – but she felt tired. Her arms hurt. They were covered in—

Blood! Blood everywhere.

At her feet was what remained of the thief that tried to escape with the mask. She didn’t know him, knew only that he wanted the mask and that Celethel run him down…

Rae’na’lís felt as if the rest of her had caught up. She remembered trying to disguise the claw and fang marks with rending cuts of her blade. She couldn’t let Celethel’s actions be discovered. The guards had made clear the consequences for her companion if they were. Covering up the wounds by opening the flesh was all she could think of.

But this…

The sole blessing was that nobody would think her panther capable of this.

In a macabre stencil, the jagged lines on the thief’s back came together to form a picture that stared back at her.

The Dragon Mask.

With the thieves dead and the mask secure, the party’s actions were discovered by a patrol of the Night Watch. Suspicious of the bodies littered about and the damage done to private property they arrested Sai’on’ay, Nikos and Trisana and escorted them to the watch house, unaware of Rae’na’lís and Celethel in the sewers below.

Sai’on’ay, however, was well aware of what his companion had done beneath the streets as his raven familiar had seen the grisly art.

Meanwhile, back at the Green Griffon, Basket discovered that as good as Flynn was at holding people’s attention, he was just as good at avoiding it as he had left the young druid to explain the noise, the bodies and the hole blown in the inn’s roof. Demanding an accounting, Basket offered to work off the damages to the unimpressed innkeeper.

He confiscated the party’s belongings anyway.

Rae’na’lís, unaware of Basket’s peril and acutely aware of the perils facing the rest of the party, covered her escape through the sewers, backtracking to the Green Griffon in the hope of picking up Dranosh’s trail.

Nikos attempted to hide the Black Dragon Mask that was discovered by the Night Watch and that discovery, if anything, made them even more suspicious of the party. Taken to their headquarters, the trio were thrown into a cell and waited for an audience with Captain Nathanial Connerson with whom they would plead their case.

Rae’na’lís returned to the Green Griffon just in time to see Basket in the middle of a brawl with the upset patrons who were none to happy about the party attracting thieves and murderers to the inn. With most of the party in peril, Rae’na’lís decided to secure Dranosh’s help freeing her friends from the Watch, and sent Celethel into the inn to even the odds. A growl drowned out the indignation of Green Griffon’s customers and nobody was keen to continue the fight while Basket could count on the panther’s aid. Unfortunately the members of the Night’s Watch responding to the disturbance at the inn were not as easily cowed and Basket became the fourth member of the party invited to attend the watchhouse

Rae’na’lís, unaware of this, arrived at the temple of Bahamut where Dranosh slept and dragged the Paladin out of bed to plead their friends’ innocence.

It was an innocence that Captain Connerson had a hard time believing. The discovery of the mask had resulted in new charges being laid upon Sai’on’ay, Nikos, Trisana and, now, Basket as they learnt that ships along the Sword Coast had been accosted by pirates bearing similar garb. Adamant in their innocence, Trisana sought the aid of priests whose divine incantations could determine the truth of their claims. Fortunately, and with no small thanks to a donation to the coffers of Bahamut, both the Abbot of the Temple and Dranosh arrived.

The Dragon God of Justice was able to determine the innocence of the party, both of murder in the streets and of being complicit in acts of piracy, but innocence came at no small cost. The repair of the stall Sai’on’ay had damaged, the hole in the roof of the inn, the affray and disturbance to the peace of Neverwinter all attracted hefty fines that, thanks only to the rewards attained in Mirabar, the party was able to afford. The Innkeeper was further mollified by the promise that the Green Griffon would receive exclusive rights to Flynn’s future performances in Neverwinter— an even that would occur at least once a year.

The party was free of the watch but not of suspicion. The Abbot was most displeased at Dranosh’s reluctance in sharing the discovery of the Black Dragon Mask – deciding that it would better to leave the mask in more secure and experienced hands – and Sai’on’ay could not stop looking at Rae’na’lís, both knowing the grisly reason why. Unable to retain their rooms at the Green Griffon, the party instead traveled beyond the reputation they had made and purchased lodgings at the Sea Sprite. Located close to the ship that would see them to Candlekeep, the party had to decide what they would do about Fedic, the crime lord of Neverwinter whose ire they had attracted.

Fedic, it seemed, wanted a resolution to this conflict as well. A new contact that Nikos had made passed on Fedic’s desire for a meeting. A meeting that wasn’t inviting or conducive to a peaceful resolution, but at least it might put Fedic within the reach of the party. Agreeing to send three people to negotiate terms, they headed toward the decrepit centre of Neverwinter, the area most affected by the troubles that had challenged Faerun and the area most likely to avoid the attention of the watch.

Expecting a trap, Rae’na’lís, Dranosh and Basket shadowed Nikos, Sai’on’ay and Trisana to the rendezvous, reacquainting themselves with an adversary met on the way to Neverwinter; the mage Sarah Maria. Escorted into a dilapidated building, the party were confronted not with Fedic, but instead with a pipe that carried the voice of the crime lord from an adjoining building. Fedic remained absent but his demands were present: A payment for the slaves the party had freed to the tune of 2100 gold pieces immediately. Nikos set about haggling only to discover that Fedic was not the type to bargain. Strictly speaking, neither was Nikos and with deft suddenness, Sarah Maria once more found herself a hostage to the rogue. Negotiations stalled and combat came as quickly as Fedic’s guards. Fortunately Rae’na’lís, Dranosh and Basket were just as quick!

What originally was going to be a fighting withdrawal quickly turned into a route for Fedic’s forces as the party overpowered the thugs. Cut down by axe, sword, arrow and spell, the fight moved from the streets of Neverwinter, through the abandoned building and into the favour of the party. When it was all over, Trisana and Sai’on’ay had taken one of the thugs hostage though the thug’s captain, the mage and Fedic had managed to escape. Disproving the axiom of honour among thieves, their hostage bought his freedom by telling the party everything he knew about Fedic’s activities including a number of interests located close by. Willing to press the advantage, the party headed to a nearby warehouse were Fedic’s trail grew cold. Carefully avoiding the traps left, Trisana, Basket, Rae’na’lís and Nikos discovered the warehouse served as a cache of potions and poisons that Fedic had taken.

Meanwhile Dranosh and Sai’on’ay discovered that Fedic still lurked close by. Each were taken by surprise by a poisoned dart that nearly killed the Paladin and rendered the mage both unconscious and, in a turnabout move, a hostage just as Sarah Maria had been.

Rae’na’lís stepped out into the night air to see Dranosh: the strongest of their number, dying on the ground. Frantic, she searched for Sai’on’ay but saw nothing. Listening hard, the crack of a whip and the clatter of hooves and wheels against cobblestone reached the periphery of her hearing. Trusting in her remaining companions to care for Dranosh she sprinted desperately after the noise that, doubtless, spirited Sai’on’ay toward some grim fate…

Fortunately among the cache were potions of healing that were able to counteract the purple worm poison coursing through Dranosh and Basket was able to restore the Paladin to his feet. Rae’na’lís meanwhile, ran hard in pursuit of the horse and cart. The elf was fast but outmatched by the constitution of a horse-drawn cart. Fortunately she had pinpointed the direction of her foes and, surprisingly, it turned out that the party was not without a horse of their own.

Basket had experienced more in the last couple of weeks in search of Trisana than she had her entire life and, realising the urgency of their need, unlocked new powers that allowed her to take the shape of a horse herself. Trisana, an adept rider, flung herself upon Basket’s newly broad back and they thundered down the street in pursuit. The distance closed as Fedic had his thugs push their own horses beyond endurance, resulting in the death of one and the exhaustion of another. Taking shelter in a safe-house, Fedic brought his blade before Sai’on’ay’s throat and demanded the surrender of the party.

As fear, panic, hopelessness and desperation threatened to overwhelm her, Rae’na’lís reached deep within herself. In the blink of an eye, the scared little girl was replaced with the bloodthirsty demeanour of something much darker.

With Trisana and Basket attempting to gain entrance through the front door, Nikos and Rae’na’lís discovered a hidden entrance in the roof. Nikos’s plan to carefully creep into the house was supplanted by Rae’na’lís’s desire to save Sai’on’ay and destroy the one who threatened his life had resulted in reinforcements all of her own. With deft, superhuman even, faculty the not-quite-elven ranger lead the way through the skylight, bypassing locks, traps and floorboards while Trisana kept Fedic’s attention on her. Not pausing, not even capable of doing so, that which controlled Rae’na’lís stole quietly behind Fedic before introducing her rapier through his chest as smooth as butter.

Taking advantage of the attack Nikos struck to knock aside the sword Fedic held to Sai’on’ay’s throat, and managed to disarm the halfling assassin. Leaving Fedic to the surprisingly savage attentions of Rae’na’lís’s, he then leapt to unbar the door that was denying Trisana and Basket entry. The Dragonborn and the horse were ushered through the door and battle was joined.

Fedic, even surprised, was capable enough to use his light crossbow and poisoned quarrels to deadly effect. Rae’na’lís felt the poison course through her and did not care. Trisana and Basket held off the remaining thugs while Sai’on’ay and Nikos joined the battle against Fedic. Rae’na’lís, if she could still answer to that name, kept coming toward Fedic, using her buckler to fend off the crossbow bolts aimed at her and Sai’on’ay. With wild powerful swings of her rapier intended to maim rather than kill, she pressed back the halfling assassin. The true Rae’na’lís, recognising the ease with which her passenger could have dispatched the halfling attempted to goad it into finishing the job – but as a result the poison that had been held in abatement assaulted her with such viciousness that the elven ranger fell to the ground.

Despite his wounds, Fedic retrieved his foe’s rapier and was determined that he would not die alone. Dispatching her own foe, Trisana thew herself over her companion, forcing one of the recently-acquired healing potions between Rae’na’lís’s lips. It was a treatment administered just in time as the halfling’s skill saw the rapier thrust into its owner, but was spared the fatal blow.

It was then that light was brought to this dark place as Dranosh, recovered enough from the poison, filled his sword with Bahamut’s divine power and joined the battle.

Fedic avoided a furious Sai’on’ay who was equal in vengeance to Rae’na’lís’s safety as she was to his but he could not avoid the justice administered by the chosen of the Platinum Dragon. Falling to his knees, the holy blade passed through Fedic and, with that, the crime lords of Neverwinter changed from six to five.

Many questions remained:

What proof did they have that their actions taken this night had been in the cause of righteousness?

What repercussions awaited them from the underworld of Neverwinter?

Had Fedic actually had any knowledge of the dragon mask and the pirates who reputedly wielded similar artifacts?

Was there some hidden influence within the party that was somehow guiding them from one dragon mask to another?

What bargain had Rae’na’lís struck, and what would be it’s cost?

A Little Trust

Sai’on’ay gritted his teeth as he headed for the gates at first light. Another town full of useless people. It seemed the whole of Faerûn was like this – either fools or thieves. Nothing in the human nations felt like the civilisation of home, though even that peace had been irrevocably shattered. Still, at least conversation with most Elves of Cormanthor was dignified and respectful, not like what passed for discussion amongst Men here in these parts.

There was no sense in dwelling further on the subject, though, and with little further thought of the denizens within, Sai’on’ay strode beneath the crude stonework of the western gate of Esmeltaran, and resumed his travels.

The contact he had hoped to meet had left over a day ago, a poorly-spoken innkeeper had begrudgingly informed him after some pressure, and had – maybe – headed west, along the caravan routes. Paved roads made for swift passage for anyone in a hurry, and if the man he sought had obtained a cart or better, a fresh horse, Sai’on’ay estimated that he may already be most of the way to Crimmor. Such a route typically would continue thence to Athkatla, and Sai’on’ay knew that if this man’s intent was to escape him, it would be there, with access to other trade roads and the sea, that he would slip away permanently.

He was disturbed from his ruminations by the angry shout of a caravan driver, who had to pull hard on the reins in order to wrench his team of horses around the brooding mage. Sai’on’ay’s head snapped up just in time to see the animals thunder past him, and a squat, ruddy man on the cart who was presently shouting expletives as he went by the Elf.

Glaring back at the man, Sai’on’ay gripped his staff a little tighter and instinctively wove his fingers in a simple pattern often practised, the illusion of a boulder on the path forming in his mind as he scanned the road ahead of the caravan driver for an appropriate place to- perhaps not. After all, the man had done him no harm – quite the opposite, in fact – and there was no sense in making an enemy over such a trivial matter. He lowered his hand, and the Weave smoothed out once more, the caravan continuing unimpeded along the road towards Esmeltaran.

Sai’on’ay shook his head and resumed his march, mentally resolving to disallow contemplations distracting him from potential threats on the road. It would not do to be caught off-guard by brigands here, and though the trade routes through Amn were held in the highest regard, yet still there were places where the opportunistic or malicious could lurk unseen. It would take a day and a half at least to reach Crimmor, and the path would take him through a small but dense thicket of woods near where the river bent towards the road, near as not to dusk.

For now though, the path was clear, and the rising Sun swiftly banished the shadows about, so Sai’on’ay allowed his thoughts to wander once more, while keeping a watch on the road ahead.

The day was uneventful, but as the Sun sunk towards the western horizon, Sai’on’ay approached the woods with a wary eye. The Stunted Oaks, as this area was known, was not truly large enough to be called a forest, and the trees here grew thick, but not tall, causing the canopy to be much lower and feel more oppressive than the massive, glorious forests of his homeland.

The path was reasonable though, and remained clearly cut into the ground, and circumventing the woods would add at least an extra half day to the journey, so the choice was clear. Maintaining the confidence of his stride, the Wizard continued on beneath the foliage.

The shadows deepened as dusk settled, and a soft arrangement of music began from the wildlife beneath the canopy, each tiny creature acknowledging the loss of the Sun and the dropping temperature. Elven eyesight was easily a match for the muted twilight however, and Sai’on’ay pressed on. Making it through the woods before he stopped for the night would gain some much-needed time on his quarry, and by his reckoning it would be safer to camp on the open road than here beneath the trees.

It was only an hour into the night when he first sensed that he may not be the only sentient being in the thicket. Choosing a projection of confidence over obvious caution, he maintained his pace while nonetheless focussing on his senses in efforts to determine the location and possible intent of the intruder. The sounds grew closer, and suddenly he realised there was more than one, and that they were carefully surrounding him.

Tightening his grip on his staff, he came to a halt, and drew his thoughts together into a familiar mindset. The Weave glimmered into view, suffusing all things with its essence, and with his free hand he made a small, regular gesture, waiting until the first assailant entered into view before uttering a single word, and throwing his hand upwards. A spray of glittering sparks flew upward, briefly illuminating the leaves of the canopy before they burst outward from the centre and scattered, fading from view.

“That’s a very pretty trick, Wizard, but we aren’t afraid of tricks here,” the man before him said in a rough voice, smiling at the Elf as he hefted a large axe with both hands, “What we do know, don’t we gentlemen,” he continued, gesturing about as three more men stepped from the shadows with weapons and torches, “Is that your type often comes laden with the kinds of wealth we tend to enjoy taking.” He paused briefly, and, receiving no reply, went on, “Well now, it seems that was all this Elf had to show us. A pity, but no matter. Perhaps he is scared?”

Two of his men chuckled at that, and the leader fixed Sai’on’ay with a look, the smile disappearing. “There is nothing in these woods that scares us, little Wizard. We will happily escort you to its boundary, in exchange for your valuables. We tend to find that people who refuse this generous offer…have difficulty finding their way out,” he said, patting the handle of his axe to emphasise the point.

Sai’on’ay nodded, feigning obedience, and slipping a hand under his cloak, carefully withdrew what appeared to the bandit leader to be a dark, precious jewel, a couple of inches long and cut into careful facets. He stepped forward hesitantly, appearing to falter and stumble, then dropped to the side and flicked his hand out, tendrils of magic extending from his fingertips and causing the underbrush near one of the bandits to burst into flame. The man yelped and dropped his torch, further inflaming the kindling, as he sought frantically to leap out of the range of the fire.

Seeking to capitalise on the disturbance, Sai’on’ay sprang to his feet and made to escape, but his path was swiftly blocked by the bandit leader, his powerful frame closing the distance quicker than expected. “Wrong choice,” he said, unconcealed eagerness in his voice, as he brought the axe to bear and swung at the Elf. It went wide, however, as Sai’on’ay hurriedly stepped away from the assailant, and turned to come face to face with another of the bandits.

The man raised his mace but the Wizard was quicker, surprising him by leaping forward and touching a crude necklace on the bandit’s neck, speaking rapid words of command as his arcane focus flared with brilliance. The incandescent gem swiftly faded as it was channelled into the necklace, and the bandit reared back as bright light emanating from his good luck charm blinded him before he could land a blow. Sai’on’ay ducked away from the man then cried out as pain lanced his arm, a crossbow bolt slicing his flesh as it narrowly avoided burying itself in his shoulder.

He looked up to see the fourth man reloading his crossbow, and hurriedly spoke the words of command as he tugged urgently at the Weave with his fingertips. The flames licking the bandits’ torches shuddered and drew inwards towards the mage, flickering out of existence before they reached him. The thicket suddenly grew dimmer with only the flames in the underbrush for illumination, then became a lot dimmer for Sai’on’ay as the haft of the leader’s axe slammed into the back of his head, and the Wizard collapsed to the ground, fighting for consciousness.

With the magically-contrived fire gutting out, the crossbowman sought to reignite his torch as the bandit leader stepped towards the groaning Elf. Sai’on’ay pulled his cloak about himself a little, trying to regain composure as his head pounded, the Weave fading from view with his concentration lost. He sensed the leader approaching, and winced as he forced his mind back into order, and twirled his hand in a brief but complex motion. The arcane focus glowed briefly beneath the cloak, then faded once more.

Raising his axe triumphantly over the Wizard, the bandit leader prepared to end his life, but stopped suddenly as the sound of trumpets came from the north-west. Familiar trumpets. The call of the Flaming Fist, on patrol and beginning a new march to keep the trade routes clear. Cursing his luck, he and the other bandits began looking around rapidly for cover, hiding amongst the trees once more as the sound of armoured men began to approach.

Sai’on’ay took the opportunity to pull himself to his feet, and stagger off in the opposite direction, leaning on his staff for support and keeping a tight hold of his arcane focus with the other hand. As the illusory reinforcements faded from earshot with the spell’s expiration, he sunk to the ground once more, his head wracked with pain. Leaning up against a boulder, and with significant effort, he wove illusions about his resting place, concealing himself from further intrusion.

This was not a good place, but it would have to do. Sai’on’ay slipped into his reverie, sinking a little deeper than usual, but nonetheless keeping his senses as alert as he was able through the pain.

Unaccosted for the remainder of the night, with the bandits choosing to cross the river and hide their tracks, Sai’on’ay rose from his reverie in the morning, shoulder stinging and head still pounding, but alive and able to resume his journey. The night’s experience had chosen caution for him this morning, and after a wary track through the trees, he emerged gratefully on the other side before the Sun reached its zenith.

With the outskirts of vague civilisation beginning to appear in the distance, Sai’on’ay continued past the occasional farm and homestead, and traffic increased on the road once more. He passed caravans and travellers alike, eschewing conversation with all, until at last, after a curt conversation with a member of the Town Guard and the transfer of a few coins from the Elf’s pouch to the guard’s hand, he entered Crimmor, the Caravan Capital of Amn.

Seeking to tarry only one night, rest and heal, then make it to Athkatla by the following afternoon, the Wizard strode through the aptly named Tent District, a large marketplace full of temporary stalls for travelling merchants to seek to lighten their loads before continuing to the nation’s capital. He passed eager salespeople, busy servants, the occasional pampered noble issuing orders, and spied a sign advertising a room broker for temporary accommodation.

As he headed towards the broker, he overheard snippets of conversation from various sources. Largely mercantile chatter and the reproach of servants, then filtering through that, a voice distinctly Elven, protesting the not-unkind teasing of a Halfling who appeared older than her.

“You do realise that every time you give these urchins your food, more are going to ask you to feed them?” said the Halfling, smiling as he pulled his cloak around him.
“But they look so hungry Emil… They have nothing here in the city. At least in the forest it’s easy to find good food; here they have to beg for scraps,” the Elven girl said, gesturing around, before her face broke into a huge grin, “Besides, did you see that last one? He was so happy for a piece of bread that he hugged me!”
Her companion, Emil, laughed, “Actually, he stole your purse.”
“What? No…but…” she said, as her face fell.

Sai’on’ay shook his head at the naïveté, and continued, only to be stopped moments later as a young child suddenly crashed into him, wobbling as he tried to recover balance, and clutching a purse tightly to his chest. The tall Elf glared down at the boy, briefly taking in that the purse looked too ornate to be of human design, before flicking his hand and scattering angry red sparks at his feet, causing the boy to yelp and stumble backwards in fear.

“Hey, don’t hurt him!” came the voice of the Elven girl, rushing over to the commotion, “He’s just a- hey, that IS my purse!”

She checked the boy over to ensure he was not hurt, gently retrieving her purse in the process, and looked up at Sai’on’ay. “He’s just a boy; you don’t have to scare him like that,” she said.

The Wizard affixed her with a look. “You should pay more attention to your belongings, rather than worrying about the fate of petty thieves,” he said, and dismissed them both, turning on his heel to head off and engage the room broker in conversation. The Elven girl made a face at his back, and headed back to her mentor to continue their business.

A few minutes and ten silver later, and Sai’on’ay was being shown to a nearby inn, and a room promised to be secluded and comfortable, somewhere an Elf could rest and recover for the night.

Having largely recovered from his wounds through the benefit of an unimpeded rest, Sai’on’ay rose in the morning and

Ties That Bind
One Night in Neverwinter

Everything was new!

Basket, apprentice druid of lands far from here, had only known two kinds of life: The one growing up homeless on the streets of Saradush and, most recently, her time spent in study with Ravenwing, her mentor, in the lands of Heavenslight. So when the noble house of Shadowfire bid her to journey in search of their daughter Trisana Shadowfire, every step north was a into a place she had never seen.

While the lands nearing the Spine of the World was cold, the earth beneath her feet was were warmer than cobblestones of Saradush. While the howling wind lashed about her, it sent the trees into a swaying dance instead of bouncing the gusts off unyielding brick and into her chest. It was clean and sharp up here, welcoming to those who could survive its austere scenery, and Basket had always been a survivor.

Others, however, had been much less fortunate.

Spying travellers who, likewise, eschewed the blazed trail of merchants and traders, Basket moved closer to see if the people of this place were warmer than the land.

They were not…

Marching on to Neverwinter, avoiding the rest of the Bugbear tribe, the party travels off the trade roads wary that other, more unsavoury characters roam in these parts.

Ranging ahead, Rae’na’lís, and her panther Celethel, are alerted to travellers crossing their path. Identifying them as slavers, the elven ranger discovers that Flynn ‘Danger’ Ellison, who had agreed to catch up with the party down the road to Neverwinter, is among the suffering souls being dragged to an unsavoury fate. Alerting the party to the bard’s situation and, with little time to prepare, Nikos stalls them in conversation; a plan that works for as long as it takes for Dranosh to call out for justice!

With battle joined the party discovers that the slavers, while not as formidable as themselves, are gifted with guile. Nikos’s attempt to take the slave leader hostage results in her disappearing in a cloud of mist and escaping both him and Rae’na’lís. Dranosh’s titanic prowess is stalemated by a quicker slaver with neither landing a telling blow. Fortunately Trisana Shadowfire and Sai’on’ay are able to turn the tide of battle, eliminating many of the slavers and, with Flynn freeing those captured, the rest fled leaving their former captives and supplies behind.

Reunited, the party learn that the former slaves had been journeying toward Luskan where they would be sold. Many of the captives hailed from Neverwinter, and those that did identified the same person responsible for the grim fate they had just avoided: A halfling named Fedic.

Offering to escort the freed people back to Neverwinter, and introduce themselves to Fedic, the party was surprised to discover one among the captives already keen to travel with them. Basket, a druid from Trisana’s home, revealed she had been sent from the Shadowfire family to locate their roaming daughter and bid her, and her friends, to return. With Candlekeep being the party’s ultimate destination, and the Shadowfire lands being situated close by, Dranosh was, once again, denied the opportunity to journey north to the Pirate Capital of Luskan.

The Scavengers of Herodsford
How it all began...

Seeking their fortune Sai’on’ay, Nikos and Elana Goldstone travelled to the trading town of Herodsford. Encountering goblins along the way – and quickly dispatching them – the party discovered the remains of one of the trading caravans bound for the town.

Upon their arrival at Herodsford and, after recounting their experience on the road, the party met Kell, a humble ratcatcher and anxious father awaiting the arrival of his daughter Lillain. But before any further could be said, the party was notified that any adventurer in Herodsford must operate under the blessings of the Guild of Rovers, Adventurers and Itinerant Combatants, requiring dues in excess of what the party could afford.

Deciding to continue their conversation away from prying ears, the party learnt that Lillain was travelling to Herodsford with a trade caravan. The party offered to return to where they had located the abandoned caravan to learn what they could. Uncovering goblin tracks that lead them to a nearby camp, a further set of unusual tracks— large paw-prints in the company of human footprints.

Ambushing the camp and seeing it destroyed, the party learnt that the camp belonged to but one tribe of several other tribes in the area; all who lived in fear of something responsible for the unusual traps. Alerted to a bestial howl, the party sped northward to discover an abandoned hut and even more of the paw-prints only this time they were heading back to Herodsford.

Racing through the forest at night in pursuit of the beast, the party arrived just in time to see something huge and hairy scale the town’s walls. Getting inside themselves, they followed the tracks to a warehouse where Kell was working. Backed into a corner with no way out except through the jaws of the slavering werewolf, the party bravely charged into battle!

Elana charged the lycanthrope with Sai’on’ay hurling spells in support. Meanwhile Nikos had spied a dangling chain wound about the werewolf’s neck and, in a heroic display of acrobatics, sent the chain over an exposed beam in the warehouse and used it to hold the werewolf back. Now secured, the party had time to collect their thoughts and wonder why the werewolf had not slain Kell outright in the time it had available. Suspicions were confirmed as the morning chased the moon away and what was stood in the werewolf’s place was none other that Lillain, who had used what little humanity was left to hold the beast inside her from tearing her father apart!

Explaining to her father and the party, Lillain recounted the goblin attack on the trade caravan she had journeyed with and how another werewolf had lead ambush. Cursed by a bite from the lycanthrope, she was taken prisoner and had only managed to escape last night— the second night of the full moon.

With one night left until the curse became permanent – and confident that the werewolf and his goblin tribes would react to Lillain’s and the party’s activities – Nikos, Sai’on’ay and Elana went to seek aid from a power slightly less mercantile and savage: The Guild Leader Hardestadt.

Learning Hardestadt had, among his treasures, a collar that could offer a release from the lure of lycanthropy, and further learning that the Guild Leader aspired for even more power within Herodsford and, indeed, neighbouring Waterdeep, Nikos and Sai’on’ay were able to convince the Guild Leader that allowing the party to act on the Guild’s behalf in rescuing the fair maiden Lillain would endear him and his political aspirations to the townsfolk.

Hardestadt, recognizing that if the party failed he would be blameless, and intrigued by Lillain, offered the party the collar. Deciding to shield Lillain from the curse, the party agreed to fasten it to her, rather than use its magic against the werewolf. With Hardestadt on-side and Lillain safe, Nikos, Sai’on’ay and Elana ventured into the forest once more.

Following the trail back to the werewolf’s lair, the party discovered that the goblins were moving the stolen hoard of treasure taken from the merchant caravans and, deciding to strike so as to take advantage of the confusion, the party enacted a plan. Elana charged the werewolf while Sai’on’ay set the camp alight with his magic to distract the goblins. Through the chaos, Nikos sneaked his way behind the werewolf and joined Elana in the fray.

Axe and sword fought with claw and fang as the party struggled against the vicious werewolf. Savage rents were wrought upon them though each wound was answered by the bite of steel. The tide of battle turned and turned again until, at last, the final blow was struck…

…and the curse of the werewolf was lifted.

Laden with what treasure they could find, the party returned to the grateful adulation of the people of Herodsford. Joining them in celebration was Kell, a cured Lillain and Hardestadt the Guild Leader, and the party’s first adventure was a success…

Until Nikos, in front of the assembled crowd, condemned Hardestadt for his extortion of any adventurer that passed through Herodsford and proclaimed that he was a scavenger in this place.

The party left Herodsford in haste and have not been back since.

A Young New Friend
The first encounter between Trisana and Rae'na'lís...

The brisk night air whipped painlessly against Rae’na’lís’s face as the pure and majestic unicorn covered uncounted miles lit only by the full moon.

The festival of Greengrass was typically a busy day for followers of all races, in many religions and Rae’na’lís was no exception. While Rae’na’lís had never considered herself to be especially pious, she found it difficult to deny the festivities of the goddess of rangers and forests. It was made even more irresistible that her former mentor, the halfling ranger Emil, had elected to join her despite having reached his 107th year.

Old bits——-

The first ceremony was reserved for the greater deity Silvanus. This ceremony was primarily attended by the druids of Suldanessellar, with many of the wood elves also in attendance. The rites for Silvanus were fulfilled by breaking her old shortbow and burying it at the base of the largest Oak tree in the Wealdath.

The second ceremony took place along a small stream leading south from the River Sulduskoon. Eldath’s festival lasted most of the day and included many of the same groups as before with many of the area’s rangers.

As Eldath’s ceremony continued late into the night, Rae’na’lís and those who held the goddess Mielikki as their primary deity took their leave.

Mielikki Ranger Goddess. Worshipers of Mielikki observe planting rites and the Wild Ride, when herds of unicorns assemble and allow them to ride bareback through the forest.


I'm sorry, but we no longer support this web browser. Please upgrade your browser or install Chrome or Firefox to enjoy the full functionality of this site.