|Various Zombie minions||500xp|
|Saved Nikiti Dag Nost||500xp|
|Saved Barton and Duervar||400xp|
|Saved Hama Trollender||600xp|
|Experience point record|
- After convincing Tego that it is best if he waits with the horses with Theros and Cygnet, the party cautiously enters the stables of the Fiveleague House, the same door Tego fled from a short while ago. The stables are dark, the stench of blood and corruption heavy in the air. The moonlight streaming in from the open door illuminates a number of corpses lying amongst the hay. Elestrynna leads the way and as she gets further in, she hears the sound of hay rustling in the hay loft. Something may be alive up there.
- The entire party enters the stable and Sharat pauses to examine one of the eviscerated corpses. He carefully pokes at the corpse and notes with some detachment that the entrails are throbbing with a kind of pulse. “Uh…guys. Something’s not right here…” As he steps back, gathering the will of his gods to him, the entrails themselves leap out and grab his boot in a crushing grip. The corpse opens its eyes and begins to crawl towards him as he stumbles back, bringing his massive fullblade into a guard position. The other corpses also leap up to the attack!
- After the short, savage fight, Jai notices a face peering down from the hayloft at the conflict. It is bald, round, tatooed, and has long luxuruious mustaches, now covered in hay. The party beckons the squat, round man down and he boisterously introduces himself. “I am Nikiti Dag Nost! Merchant! And I, my friends, am glad to be alive and very much in your debt! You are heroes!”
- The party quickly hushes the giddy Nikiti and sends him out the door to the baggage train before turning to push deeper into the depths of the dark inn. Now fully on their guard, the group fights its way down the hall lined with rooms, smashing zombies as they go.
- Finally, nearing the kitchens, Hamish hears sounds of a fight taking place in the cellar and he, Elestrynna, and Sharat rush forward. Jai, though, hears a solid thump! from up the nearby steps and pauses to listen closer. Rassimohn steps up and in a strong, commanding voice calls up “If anybody is up there, speak now!” A muffled cry comes back: “I’m up here! HALP!!!”
- Elestrynna and Hamish battle through the crowd of zombies in the cellar to save the innkeeper Barton and Hamish’s surviving companion, Duervar. The second companion, Urvar, lies dead at their feet, badly mauled by zombies. A well placed shock sphere ends the fight (though Hamish gets a bit toasted in the process) and the Hamish sadly greets Duervar. Barton, the innkeeper, thanks the two for the rescue.
- Meanwhile, Jai, Rassimohn, and Sharat rush upstairs to save the survivor up above. Jai sees a crowd of zombies responding to the cries for help and rushes to the attack with the others in support. Unfortunately, Jai stumbles on the acidic slime and blood he’s coated in and only manages to get his bastard sword stuck in the railing. Sharat, though, calls upon the radience of Oghma yet again and blasts most the zombies to dust as Rassimohn rushes past and decapitates another corpse. The barred door at the end of the hall, though, is battered down by the last zombie and the calls for help turn to strangled cries of pain.
- Throwing caution to the wind, Sharat rushes down the hall and through the crumbled wall in the adjacent room and, just in the nick of time, channels his gods’ divine powers to reknit the torn flesh of a dwarf as the zombie tears into him. Jai rushes in and quickly finishes off the last zombie as the dazed dwarf, who was very nearly dead, collapses.
- The rest of the inn is cleared of zombies. Cygnet and the others, who have been waiting hidden in the woods, are brought back to the smashed inn. The decision is made to rest for the remainder of the night and making the next move. Everybody gets to work cleaning up the Fiveleague House as best they can. Corpses are stacked in a pyre in front of the inn, Barton searches and, sadly, finds the bodies of his wife and daughter. Sharat and Elestrynna preserve the bodies of Urvar and Barton’s wife and child with a ritual, hoping to perhaps find a priest willing and able to resurrect them later.
- During the evening, the party learns more of Nikiti Dag Nost. He is a boistrous fellow, a Nar fur trader on a trip to Uthmere and Ilmwatch. His first wife, who happens to be the sister of the Dag Nost tribe’s chieftain, is quite angry with him for chasing a younger woman in his village so he is happy to be away right now. He bigs the party to take their pick of the furs he carries with him as a way of thanking them and makes them promise to visit him should they find themselves in the Dag Nost tribe’s territory in Narfell.
|1 large Star Ruby worth 1,500 gp|
|1 large Fire Opal worth 1,300 gp|
|1 Tawny Orl worth 850 gp|
|8 polished Damaran Bloodstones worth a total of 400 gp|
|Total of 4050 GP|
- Hama, the dwarf saved by Sharat’s quick healing spell, is Tego’s brother. Both are successful arms and armor merchants from Helgabal, out in the Nentir Vale selling their goods to Lord Protector Markelhay and Hammerfast. They also have business interests (mines) in the Barony of Bloodstone. Hama, in particular, is very thankful for Sharat saving his life and offers up some prime gems to add to the small pile recovered from the dead bodies of the dwarven undead. The brothers give some news of Hammerfast, telling of the city being very depressed and downright funereal, and pledge their support to the party. “Visit us in Helgabal if you come that way, so we can thank you properly”, says Hama before the two turn in for the night.
- The party then decides on their next course of action: They will ride quickly to Hammerfast and attempt to stop the undead horde marching in the direction of Fallcrest from there. The theory being that magical energies that created the horde came from there, so there is where they will put a stop to it. The main party will go. Cygnet will stay with Barton at the Fiveleague House to await their return. Cygnet is not happy, but acquiesces when Rassimohn asks her to do so and his concern for her welfare appears to thaw her icy demeanor towards him…slightly. With that, everybody gets some much needed rest.
On to Hammerfast
- The next morning, after only a few short hours of rest, the party rises and heads out to Hammerfast. A quick detour is made to examine the monument on the way. There, they see the tall granite obolisk perched atop a large mound of earth sitting in the middle of a somewhat overgrown clearing. The earth has been churned to mud, pushed up from beneath as the undead corpses animated and marched off to the west. There is a clear path of broken underbrush leading, unerringly, towards Fallcrest. Concern etched deeply on their faces, the party turns east and begins their hard ride to Hammerfast.
- The party makes good time, riding through the last of the Dunwood along the Thane’s Road, which will take them to Hammerfast. The road emerges from the woods and onto a long causway that cuts across the miles of swampy bottomland that lies just to the west of Hammerfast. In winter, this is permafrost, but in the midst of summer it has turned to a boggy, mosquito-infested swamp, though the well maintained Thane’s Road makes the travel easy. The Dawnforge Mountains and Hammerfast should be visible before midday.
- About two hours (10 miles or so) west of Hammerfast, Elestrynna and Hamish bark out a word of warning. Their senses, well attuned to arcane energies, have noticed a subtle shifting of energies. The party, confused, but heeding the warning, reigns in their lathered mounts. With a quick scan, the two arcanists locate the source of their concern a short ways off. Hovering high in a thicket of aspen trees is glistening silver orb, fait arcane energies wisping off of it. “We’re being watched” says Hamish grimly. At the sight of the silvery orb, one name springs into mind: Garuk One-Eye, the Red Wizard.