Session 6 – 2/1/2015
While at the mayor’s house they learned that Ash had indeed been able to help Bethany regain her memories.
The strange changes that had afflicted Theadric during the evening raid on the Temple had begun to subside, now that the full moon had set. With a little prompting from his friends the duelist approached Ash for a diagnosis.
Ash revealed that he suspected lycanthropy, and asked some questions about how the halfling might have contracted it.
Milo felt that the changes started shortly after the Oldfur Rapier had left Theadric’s possession. Unfortunately it had left with the morning courier and was already halfway to Seaton where it was to be repaired.
The heroes took the rest of the day to recovery from their injuries. On the next morning, while eating an early breakfast a boy arrived with a message for Wizzleficks that a message had arrived for him at the general store.
The wizard headed over to the to collect his message. Milo and Hope joined him, planning to purchase some supplies.
No one in the group remembered that the family running the general store had disappeared some time ago and it had been their daughter that they’d rescued the previous morning from the crocodile cage.
Tobias and Lio tucked into a second helping of breakfast, Theadric continued to pore over the cryptic writings his father had left him, and Goddard pulled out some cards to help relieve his friends of any loose coins.
While Hope and Milo perused the wares at the general store Wizzleficks went to the counter and inquired about the message waiting for him, which the proprietor promptly handed over.
While the gnome read up on the dues he owed to the Keoish Cartographers Guild, and the bard and the sorcerr continued to browse there was a loud thunk.
Wizzleficks looked up to find that the proprietor had disappear, the windows were shuttered, and a couple burning lanterns had been spilled out onto the floor. Confused and concerned about this sudden turn of events the three arcanists tried to leave, only to find the door barred from without.
Hope was able to put out one of the oil fires by smothering it with the contents of a large bag of salt. Milo attempted to burn his way through the door with magical acid, but soon realized he wouldn’t be able to accomplish the task quickly enough.
They managed to break through one of the shutters, creating an opening that the two smaller heroes could escape through. Wizzleficks exited first, only to be confronted by the shopkeeper and his family, each brandishing a club with the clear intent of beating the cartographer to death.
Around this point word had made it back to the common room of the Dying Minotaur that there was a fire at the general store.
When Lio, Tobi, Theadric, and Goddard arrived at the storefront, they found a harried Wizzleficks, four dead or unconscious townsfolk lying at his feet, a burning building, and a few panicked commoners running about.
Aurelio rendered aid to the laid out shopkeeper, while Wizzleficks recounted what had happened. The cartographer arrived at the part in his story where the shopkeeper tried to assassinate him as said shopkeeper regained consciousness.
While Tobi restrained the shopkeeper and shouted at the commers to get a bucket brigade going, Aurelio bound the two magically slumbering accomplices. The remaining supine form had suffered from a terminal case of Milo.
Hope and Milo arrived on the scene. They had made themselves scarce, not wanting the blame for the fire to fall on themselves.
Benjin Wolf also arrived around the same time, teenaged attendants in tow, and began asking questions. He declared his skepticism that this was cult activity, and on seeing the odd symbol at the bottom of Wizzleficks letter asked if he knew what it was.
Wizzleficks told Benjin that he assumed it was the Symbol of the Keoish Cartographers Guild. Benjin informed him that it was not and refused to provide any further details to the wizard.
Hope did recognize it from her time spent in Seaton. It’s the symbol of a secret organization called The Seekers.
Ash Tidecaller soon arrived and with a spell confirmed the evil chalice’s influence on the surviving assassins. Dorian and his guards took them into custody.
With the fire under control, the heroes returned to the Temple of Phyton.
The guards at the temple had been hearing noises from the room with the trapdoor and had piled more furniture atop it just to be sure nothing could climb out.
After emptying out the room, the heroes opened the trapdoor and descended the stairs below it.
Here they found long passageway. On the left was a brick wall with a door, and at the end of the passageway was a rope ladder leading to a hidden entrance to a place beyond the temple walls and out of view from the town.
Theadric climbed the rope ladder, and wedged a piton into the door at the top to prevent it from opening.
Next the party opened the door with Fr. Abrams’ keys and found themselves in a maze, the walls all made of brick and covered in spikes.
An ogre lumbered down the hall ready to slaughter the intruders. Goddard, thinking quickly, ducked behind a wall and transformed his features into those of Fr. Abrams, and the instructed the ogre to go back to bed. To the heroes relief the ogre did just that and was soon fast asleep.
The heroes navigated the maze to its end, another locked door, and descended to the caverns below.
The party halted as a particularly large mushroom appear that the edge of their light. Lio warily shot it with an arrow, causing it to shriek loudly. A couple more arrows silenced it, but the alarm was sounded.
They moved past the deflated shrieker, descending further into the caves below and eventually came to a fork in the path. Both passages lead into pools of muddy water, and the went left, trudging slowly and carefully through the muck.
As a group of troglodytes came into view at the edge of the party’s light a crocodile lunged out from the muddy depths and slash Theadric with jagged teeth.
While Theadric and Tobias stabbed at the croc, Lio loosed arrows and the rest of the party hurled spells at the trodglodytes.
A second group of trogs came in from behind, cutting off the possibility of retreat. They also had a crocodilian pet, which slipped into the muddy water and snatched Milo in it’s jaws and began its death roll.
The paladin slung his bow and drew steel as he rushed back to deal with the croc. While it was distracted by this threat to its meal Hope pulled Milo back from the jaws and suffused the wild mage with energy from the positive plane, closing his woulds and restoring him to consciousness.
With a spell Wizzleficks sent three of the first group of trogs to dreamland. Buying Theadric and Tobi the time they needed to slay the crocodile they were fighting.
Aurelio and Hope slew the other crocodile with their swords and Milo and Goddard rushed to meet the trogs behind the group and unleashed a hellish furnace of eldritch flame, killing all four.
Tobi charged forward to engage the remaining troglodytes, now desperately trying to wake themselves. Their claws and teeth proved little use against the historian’s armored form, and while he held them the rest of the group slaughtered the foul odored lizardmen at range.
The heroes search the nesting area, Theadric found a place where something appear to have been buried and with Tobi’s help dug up a chest. Lio found the appropriate key to open it and the found a mass of coins and a brooch that Theadric recognized as belonging to Talis, his missing childhood friend.
The also found two locked rooms, that once again Lio was able to open with Fr. Abrams’ keys. The squalid rooms appeared to have once housed prisoners, but were now empty.
Theadric and Tobi dug through the room for evidence of humanoid remains, but found none.
The party returned to the surface, slaying the ogre in its sleep on their way.
The group reported their findings to the mayor, and spent the rest of the day and the next reprovisioning for a trip out into the swamp.
After speaking with Vilma Merridi to learn the direction she had seen the troglodytes travel into the swamp, they headed out into the Hool Marshes.
About midday, they were attacked by a group of giant frogs, intent on eating the halflings and the gnome, who were just the right size for their gullets. The amphibians were dispatched quickly and the heroes moved on.
After a day of travel the heroes made camp. As was now his habit, the increasingly cautious cartographer cast a spell to warn the him of approaching danger. Watches were set, with Goddard taking first.
While his companions slept, Lord Goddard Second Baron Altier laid out the candle and scroll for the ritual that would transport them to the Good Hills so that he could perform a task for his patron. He lit the candle and spoke the words, and descend into a dream filled sleep….