05/02 (we’re all here)
Open threads/stuff to do: “The Emissary” coming back to Rivenroar within the month; Rufus Crumly, the necromancer is suspicious; Aldor’s power; black arrows on our weapons; why does the enemy want to harvest Aldor’s organs?; spy in Brindol?;
We start in Overlook. We have resurrected Aldor at a temple to the Raven Queen. We are not richer. When Aldor awakens that evening, and doesn’t remember much of anything but the Fist. Nissa explains what happened. Slowly, he starts to remember.
We return the gold we found on the dwarves to the Temple of Moradin.
We want use Aldor as bait to draw the ones who want to harvest his organs. ALso, we do an insight check and come to the conclusion that it was odd that the people knew enough to plan the ambush, but not enough to include Theseus. We pass the word that Aldor is dead, and that we will be cremating him the next day at dust. We will wait until tomorrow at the Raven Queen Temple. After we have past the word, we await in an ambush situation, waiting to see if anyone takes the bait.
Towards 8 or 9 the next evening, Aldor sees a cloaked figure trying to glance at the body from a distance. As the figure moves off, the wind blows off the hood, and we see that it’s a woman. Aldor tries to follow her, not terribly stealthily. She gets away. We start to prepare the “body” for burning, to try and draw them out. We set the pyre alight. Nothing happens. We abandon the plan.
We try and get some more info on Rufus Crumly (group skill challenge). We find out that undead horrors guard his tower, so it would be a bad idea to try and break in. We also find out that he only returned to town a few days ago. He has employed barguests (the bad guys who attacked us) in the past, but they are pretty popular as hired mouks. We try and find out if he hired these particular mouks, but find out that strangers came into town 4 days before, and these might be a lead.
We narrow down new people to town to 4 inns: Belden’s Rest (operated by elderly couple named Rory and Ruth Teng; good reputation), Mountain’s Hearth (run by dwarf named Reggen; good reputation), House of Sleep (in elftown district; high end; run by eladrin named Kalaban Whisperwind), Swain’s Boarding House (run by Swain, an alcoholic; low class, bad rep).
Nissa realizes that in certain circles, eladrin organs are prized for doing really bad rituals because eladrin organs are high quality. The next morning, we start at Swain’s. It’s a dive and disgusting. Swain is already drunk, and doesn’t really remember anything. Aldor gets a sense that he is being evasive. The Fist attempts to intimidate him, supported by everyone else. He doesn’t give us any more info, but darts looks towards the common room. Theseus guards the innkeeper , but we can’t pick out who in the common room is the issue.
However, we ultimately notice that even thought the common room is dirty, there is a patch on the floor that is very clean. We do notice that there are red stains there, so someone was recently bleeding in this area, and it was cleaned up. Also, it seems like a body was dragged across the floor.
We go back to threaten the innkeeper, to get more info. We learn that a druggie OD’ed, and he called “Bonita” to come and clean up the dead. She does these things. She works for Rufus Crumly, so the innkeeper arranges for us to meet with her at the inn. She had apparently collected other bodies that night.
Later that afternoon, a half-elf woman shows up, hand on her hilt. We try and get info out of her. We irritate her into telling us to look into the disappearance of Jonas Wainwright. He was thrown out of the Pig & Bucket tavern. She leaves.
We go to the Pig & Bucket tavern (rough place; Kyle Rester). We ask around and learn that he was a travelling gadget salesman who got thrown out because his gadgets failed to work. He was a human. One of the barmaids (Annie) tell us that he turned up a few days later at another inn, Belden’s Rest.
We go to Belden’s Rest. Our reputation precedes us, and we are offered a free pint. They are very receptive to us, so we ask them for info. He left a few days ago, in the evening. He mentioned there was someone, a wizard, that had the “vision” to sell his wears. Sold poetry to Kalaban Whisperwind. Theseus notices that Rory is nervous. We notice also that the main corridor extends about 10 feet past the last door before ending.
We try and get them to talk. We suck, and they ask us to leave. We leave, intending to come back tonight to check out the corridor. We go to the House of Sleep. It is the evening. We talk to his head waiter guy, who tells us nothing much. We decide to stay there so we can meet with Kalaban the next day. He does tell us that there was a guest named Summerfeld or Summerheld who was thrown out for stealing poetry and not paying his bill. It’s probably Edgar Summerfield, Hasim’s nemesis.
We notice that one of the books in the common room is not dusty. It seems to be the book that Edgar was trying to steal. One of the pages and lines is marked. It reads:
“Crowned thou art / For merciless sins / In beauty, through order / Where floweth blood / Both beginning and ending / And anguish thy name, broken and afraid / Only one may help you now / As you wish you were in hell”
Nissa remembers that this is from a story written as cautionary tale for eladrin dabbling in the black arts about guy who sold his soul to devil for power and ultimately gets dragged into hell.
That night, Nissa stays behind at the House of Sleep, and Hasim joins the group to return to Belden’s Rest to check out the odd corridor that we saw. We sneak into the inn, and go to the corridor. There is a secret door in the corridor! We hear nothing behind the door. We look for the lock, and are able to open the door quietly without alarms. The passage descends into a dark and unfinished basement.
We stealthily descend the stairs and find a heavy iron door with a logo of flames in a stylized sphere. It is the mark of Asmodeus, father of devils and ruler of the nine hells! God of tyranny & domination. “Show neither pity or mercy to the weak as you climb to power—the weak are not worthy of aid.” is his slogan. We piece together the correct passwords to open the door. “Where should I flee? If unto heaven he’ll drag me down to hell!” (NOTE: these words were said to Nissa in her dream!)
The door swings open…
A nauseous combination of incense and rank blood assails our nostrils. We proceed into a small, dark area with an altar soaked in blood with ceremonial daggers. Two cloaks hang on pegs. We find a secret door that leads outside to the back of the inn, with faint boot tracks that we can’t trace.
We sneak upstairs to the room of the innkeepers. We draw swords and wake the innkeepers with our hands over their mouths. We threaten to reveal their secret. They demand to be allowed to leave the town. We tell them they are in no position to give us terms. Rory finally agrees to talk. They sacrificed Jonas on the night of the 16th to prevent the exposure of their own secret. They sold the body to Bonita, who took the body to Crumley. A dwarf known only as the Splinter had a meeting with rough-looking folk at the inn called the Salty Mug (rough-looking folk in cloaks often mean races that want to remain hidden—i.e Barghest). Yerin Dalovoy, the halfling who runs the Salty Mug, is the centre of all kinds of smuggling and nefarious activities. Rory and his wife suspect that this is where the attack on us originated. We agree to let them go free, but warn them that if they are discovered worshipping Asmodeus or practicing these kinds of deeds again, we will have no mercy on them.
When we return to the House of Sleep, a note is waiting for us: Elder Kadrick wants to have an emergency meeting with us in the morning.
We sleep, and Elder Kadrick comes in to meet us during breakfast. He offers us an emergency mission—the Co of Wolves were sent to ensure that tunnels and fissures in the mountains would remain closed to the orcs, but they haven’t come back on time. We are supposed to investigate what happened to them and keep the passages closed, in exchange for the reward that was promised the Co of Wolves. We are also supposed to shut down the Nexus, a piece of machinery that controls access to the various tunnels.
The fissures are a day’s ride away. We arrive at the area by the end of day. We find a campsite in the acrid smoke and sulfurous air. Footprints lead into one of the larger openings. We follow. Skill challenge ensues to navigate the tunnels. We succeed! We reach an old network of excavated tunnels and chambers.
We hear arguments coming from a tunnel, and find bad guys. We fight! We win, but run away from canons through a door into another fight with no rest.
MILESTONE BUT NO REST
Nissa goes down, but The Fist raises her. We continue to try and stay alive. We win!!!!
ENCOUNTER COMPLETE & SHORT REST