Daggerford and the North

Campaign Session Report #12
Waterdeep, Part 3

Game session date: 18 January 2014

Campaign Date: 30 Marpenoth – 3 Uktar 1357 DR

At the Yawning Portal, the Heroes listened to the conversations and watched others. They asked around among the patrols present about Undermountain and hear a few things, including that the Lords of Waterdeep pay for the destruction of evil temples/shrines that exist withing Undermountain and that at least part of the massive dungeon was originally built by dwarves of Clan Melarkyn. They also hear that slavers are rumored to haunt the upper levels, that there are temples of many faiths that are at war with each other, that monsters of all kinds exists and that there are some dead magic zones and some types of magic just don’t work at all anywhere in the dungeon. They decide to buy a few things before they return and enter Undermountain later.

The next couple of days are spent in relaxation and buying a few items from the market or shops they think they might need for Undermountain.

On the morning of Uktar 3rd, while they are eating breakfast, a member of the City Watch arrived looking for them, with a summons to Piergeron’s Palace. Arriving at the Palace, they are met by the Blackstaff, who is aware of their intentions to enter Undermountain. He asks them to look into whether there is a cult of Zanbos operating in the dungeon and offers to let them leave their horses at the Palace Stables.

The Heroes then head to the Yawning Portal, pay their gold coin each, and are lowered via the lift down to the first level of Undermountain. The bottom of the well is very well traveled, and the walls are covered with broken and battered shields – Elena sees one of them has the words, “Crevasse by the stone shaped like Cormyr” etched into it, but no one knows what that means.

They see a few other things written on shields or stones, including:

  • “Beware the She-wolf and her night hounds – they killed Sarth!”
  • “Durambar Ironshanks was here and killed more orcs than he could count!” (underneath it was written, in a different hand, “That means 11!”)
  • “Tymora remember me!”
  • “When you hear screaming, go the other way.” (underneath it was written, in a different hand, “Coward!”)

Proceeding cautiously down the corridors, they found a secret door. On the other side, an armored construct that Thorkil identified as a helmed horror approached them, but rather than attack, it presented them with a ring, which Thorkil took and, after studying it, was able to determine it was a minor artifact that would function only within Undermountain, but which gave the wearer some good powers while in the dungeon. In this same room they found an old brass key.

Further down, they came to a room with numerous pillars and a single statue of a woman. When they left the room, the statue animated and attacked them, and after a few moments of panic, they were able to slip away from it. Thorkil identified it as another type of construct known as a caryatid column.

They came to another room and found three orcs taking a break, eating some cold roast rabbit, and playing dice. A quick fight ensued and the Heroes were victorious.

Moving on, they eventually came to a massive room with three huge statues of ancient elven and human heroes. There was a plain-looking staff lying on the floor and when Thorkil touched the staff, it screamed and a hobgoblin ran out of a tunnel and attacked. It wasn’t a long fight, and the hobgoblin was the only one.

Continuing in a generally northerly movement, the Heroes found themselves in a heavily trapped room, though the traps looked to have been set off long ago and never reset. There were blades and spikes jutting from ceiling, floor and walls of the room. At the south end of the room was a small closet and mostly looted chest.

END OF SESSION

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Campaign Session Report #11
Waterdeep, Part 2

Game session date: 10 January 2014

Campaign Date: 28 Marpenoth – 30 Marpenoth 1357 DR

The Heroes arose the morning of the 28th of Marpenoth and had breakfast at their inn before heading to the market. Along the way, Thorkil presented Elena with a gift, an everburning torch he had made for her the night before. They wandered the market for a while, then visited a few shops, ending up at a place called Xondarul’s Magic Emporium, where both Lyssa and Noran purchased magic items.

While out and about, they overhear some folks talking about the Masked Rogue striking yet again in Cat’s Alley. While Thorkil heads up to his room to meditate for a bit, Elena, Lyssa, and Noran wandered through Cat’s Alley, scoping it out. After that, they went exploring down by the docks.

Thorkil meditates for a while, then dresses in his finest robes and heads back to the Mage’s Guild where he presents himself for membership. After demonstrating his capabilities to the members, Thorkil was voted in as a member and presented with a cloak pin to show his membership.

That night, the Heroes decided to head to Cat’s Alley again to see if they could track down the Masked Rogue, using Lyssa as bait. They eventually found him and jumped him, and the rogue died trying to fight his way out. Before the guards arrived, the heroes unmasked him and found him to be Lord Dandobar Snome, recently betrothed to Baroness Priann of Cromm’s Hold in a match arranged by Duke Pwyll. They also found on him a tattoo of the vile god Zanbos.

The next day Thorkil wrote an encoded message to Duke Pwyll and, after impressing those at Castle Waterdeep with it’s importance, had it sent by griffon rider to Daggerford. In the letter, Thorkil explained everything about Snome.

While he was gone, Elena visited the League of Skinners and Tanners, the Adventurers’ Guild, and the Fellowship of Bowyers and Fletchers, and decided to join the Fellowship. Unlike Thorkil and the mages, Elena did not have to prove her skill or be voted in – she simply paid her joining fee and then opted to pay a year’s worth of dues up front. She received a cloak pin as a badge of membership and purchased a set of masterwork quality tools for crafting and repairing bows and arrows.

The rest of the day was spent by all in relaxation.

On the 30th of Marpenoth, the Heroes went down to the Yawning Portal to see about Undermountain.

END OF SESSION

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Campaign Session Report #10
Waterdeep, Part 1

Game session date: 3 January 2014

Campaign Date: 25 Marpenoth – 27 Marpenoth 1357 DR

On the first morning in Waterdeep, the Heroes had breakfast together at the Pampered Traveler, but then Thorkil went out to drop off Derval’s order and then visited The Plinth and prayed at the shrine of Moradin inside the Temple of All Faiths. While he was out, Elena, Lyssa, and Noran explored the massive Waterdeep marketplace. Eventually, they met back up with Thorkil while still in the marketplace and while wandering around and perusing the goods, they overheard that the Zun family of nobles was looking for some help in clearing undead from their family crypts. The Heroes decided to approach the family and offer to help.

They arrived at the Zun family villa and were seen by Olsztel Zun, heir to the family fortune. He explained that the day before, some of the family servants had gone to the City of the Dead to do monthly maintenance on the crypt. They heard noise coming from inside and, assuming it to be looters, opened the door to the crypt. Instead of looters, they saw two dead things scrambling up the stairs and smelled a horrible wet stench of death. The servants slammed the door and ran all the way back to the villa. The Heroes agreed to investigate and dispatch the undead and negotiated a preliminary price for their services. They were to meet the servant Joseph at one of the gates the next morning and Joseph would lead them to the crypt.

After leaving the Zun estate, the Heroes went across the city to the Tower of Luck – the Temple of Tymora – and procured some holy water and healing potions, just in case. They then returned to the Pampered Traveler and spent the evening relaxing before the next day’s adventure.

On Marpenoth 26 the Heroes had breakfast then set out for the City of the Dead. They met old Joseph at the gate and he lead them to the crypt and gave them a key to the door, then retreated a safe distance to wait. The Heroes opened the crypt and the smell of wet death wafted out to greet them. Moments after entering the crypt, two ghouls came scrambling up the stairs from the tomb and attacked, followed by two more shortly thereafter. While dealing with these ghouls, Thorkil recognized the sound of spellcasting in the tomb below and eventually the caster revealed himself to be a ghast sorcerer. The fight was short but vicious, with both Thorkil and Elena being struck by the ghouls diseased claws and Elena being overcome by the ghast’s stench. After the fight, the Heroes cleared the tomb and secured it, finding that the undead had come through a tunnel in one corner where the wall had collapsed. Thorkil investigated the tunnel and found that it lead to the city’s sewers. The Heroes blocked up the tunnel as best as they could, then headed for the Zun villa to discuss the matter with Olsztel and claim their pay. Because they had to deal with a spellcaster that was not expected, the Heroes asked for a little more and it was paid with no argument. After being paid, the Heroes again went to the Tower of Luck to have themselves checked for disease and cured if necessary.

After the temple they headed back to the Pampered Traveler for lunch. Thorkil ate and then put on his new robes and went to the Tower of the Order, the headquarters of the Watchful Order of Magists and Protectors, where he intended to join. After Thorkil left, Lyssa and Noran headed out to explore the city while Elena intended to stay at the inn and relax. After everyone else was gone, Elena overheard some other people at the inn talking about a Red Wizard over at the Asp’s Strike asking about “heroes from Daggerford”. In a near panic, and only knowing where Thorkil went, Elena set out to find him. After finding Thorkil and telling him what was going on, the two Heroes then set out looking for their other two companions. They found Noran at Silavene’s gambling hall and he gave them a couple places Lyssa mentioned visiting, and they eventually found her rather indisposed at Mother Tathlorn’s House of Pleasure. Once back at the inn, the four decided the next day they would investigate and try to draw the Red Wizard out.

On the 27th, the Heroes set out for the part of the city where the Red Wizard reportedly was seen. They pass by the Asp’s Strike and examine Aghairon’s Tower, where Thorkil nearly gets in trouble for throwing a rock at the skeleton of the wizard trapped at the tower. They then headed to the Dragon’s Head tavern across the square and had lunch. Upon exiting the tavern, Thorkil was entertaining some street urchins with simple magic when a ball of acid hit in the chest – the Red Wizard has been waiting on them. There was a brief battle in the streets and the Heroes dropped the wizard (unconscious) just as the City Watch arrived and arrested everyone (except Lyssa, who made a stealthy escape).

They spent an hour in jail before being questioned by the Watch Captain, who let them go after corroborating their story. The wizard was being held and charged and would probably be fined and spend time in prison. They were given the wizard’s gear for bringing him down and decided to use his money for an evening on the town – eating dinner at the Singing Sword tavern and then going to Mother Tathlorn’s for an evening of pleasure.

END OF SESSION

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Campaign Session Report #9
Heroes of Daggerford

Game session date: 28 December 2013

Campaign Date: 11 Marpenoth – 24 Marpenoth 1357 DR

On the 11th, the squad spent most of the day in mundane pursuits. Thorkil went to Derval and ordered chain barding for his new horse while Elena went to Oleg and ordered studded leather barding for her horse. Around noon, Elena received a package from her great-grandfather which contained a letter as well as a book – Of the Two Illefarns. That evening, after dinner at the Lady Luck, the squad was informed that they would be honored by Duke Pwyll around noon the next day at the palace and declared Heroes of Daggerford. The squad also discusses whether or not they should approach the Duke about going after the horde the lizardfolk are putting together.

The 12th of Marpenoth was the ceremony, where the squad stood before the Duke and the citizens of Daggerford and were declared Heroes of Daggerford.

HeroesOfDaggerfordProclamation.jpg

After the ceremony, the Heroes told the Duke of their proposal to go after the lizardfolk’s horde. The Duke and his council seemed receptive to the idea, but the Duke declared he would need time to discuss the matter with his council before making a decision.

The rest of the day and much of the evening was spent at the Lady Luck, where the Heroes were treated to numerous free drinks.

On Marpenoth 13th, the Heroes met for lunch at the Lady Luck and Elena told Thorkil about the letter and book from her great-grandfather, and she loaned him the book now that she had finished studying it. After lunch they were summoned to the palace, where the Duke informed the Heroes that their plan had his blessing. Everything from the horde – no matter the size would be turned over to the Duke and after any magic items were identified by Gwydion pen Dafyd – the court wizard – and a value obtained for all coins, gems, and jewelry, one magic item would be claimed in the name of the Duke with all/any others going to the Heroes, and 50% of the value of all coins, gems, and jewelry would given to the Heroes. The Heroes would also be allowed to keep any mundane items found in the horde (excepting gems and jewelry).

Part of the plan would include asking Baroness Priann of Cromm’s Hold to send along some soldiers and also asking Redeye to send some of his lizard warriors. To aid in relations with Redeye, the Duke sent along metal-tipped arrows, metal spearheads, metal daggers, and metal hand axes as a gift for Redeye. (The Heroes would also carry a shipment of crossbow bolts and shortswords for the Baroness that were ready for delivery). Plans were made to leave the next morning.

On the morning of Marpenoth 14, the Heroes left Daggerford, riding for Cromm’s Hold, arriving there around noon. While Thorkil took care of the delivery of the weapons ordered by the Baroness, Elena went to speak with Priann. Priann is very much in favor of the plan and agree to send two soldiers along with the Heroes, plus sending Seamus the hunter as a guide. After business is taken care of and lunch is eaten, the Heroes rode on into the Lizard Marsh, arriving at Red Eye’s camp in the evening. Red Eye is thankful for the items sent by Duke Pwyll, and agrees to send along two of his warriors with the Heroes. They stay the night with the Fox Clan and set off the next morning for the old shipwreck.

On Marpenoth 15th, the Heroes head for the shipwreck – a ship brought inland decades ago by a tidal wave and now buried nearly to the deck in mud. They find it after a few hours and realize the Dragon Fang’s have a village surrounding it. Ssesskar, the Dragon Fang leader, is spotted on the deck of the ship and many guards are all around the village. Attempting to sneak close, the Heroes draw the attention of the guards and a battle ensues. As Kratos charged towards the deck of the ship and Ssesskar, there was a loud roar, and a giant, horned lizardman charged out of the largest hut and towards Kratos. A vicious battle ensued, but Thorkil – using magic and steel – dropped the huge warchief and then took down Ssesskar as well. A few Dragon Fang warriors escaped and almost all of the females and young fled the village, but essentially the power of the Dragon Fang’s was ended and the Heroes recovered the horde they had been putting together in an attempt to entice a dragon to the area – a horde that proved more extensive than they anticipated.

After securing the village and loading the horde onto the pack animals, the Heroes returned to Red Eye’s village, where a celebration ensued. Red Eye presents each of the Heroes with a small ruby-and-leather pendant, indicating they are in his favor and welcome friends of the Fox Clan.

During the evening, Thorkil is able to determine that much of the coins and jewelry of the horde came from the ancient sunken city of Tavaray, which once stood at the mouth of the Delimbyr River.

On Marpenoth 16, the Heroes are up early and headed back home. They arrive at Cromm’s Hold after a few hours and give Priann the news, and bring home Seamus and the surviving soldier. Priann dispatches a rider to take word of the Heroes’ success to Daggerford. After a break for lunch, the Heroes hit the road again, arriving in Daggerford that afternoon, where people line the streets in anticipation. The Heroes ride through the streets with the pack animals laden with treasure, with Thorkil carrying Ssesskar’s head on a spear. They proceed to the palace and turn the treasure over to Lord Llewellyn and Gwydion, then retire for the evening.

Most of Marpenoth 17th is spent resting and recovering after the expedition, and Thorkil begins to study the book loaned to him by Elena. The 18th is also spent primarily in mundane pursuits by everyone, with Kratos finally delving into serious work on his armor.

On the 19th, the Heroes receive a summons to come to the palace the next day.

Marpenoth 20, the Heroes go to the palace and meet with the Duke, Gwydion, Llewellyn, and Kelson. Gwydion claimed Ssesskar’s Elemental Magic Rod (lesser, acid) in the name of the Duke, but all other magic items – including several potions, an ioun stone, and a handy haversack – were given back to the Heroes. A careful accounting of the value of the coins and gems had been taken and the Heroes were rewarded with half of the value – 3,574 gold pieces.

After selling splitting up their reward and selling some items to Derval, the Heroes found themselves with quite a bit of coin. Over dinner, it was decided that they would take a trip to Waterdeep, stopping at Elorfindar’s estate along the way. Kratos announced he would not go with the others, as he needed to stay and work on his armor.

The next day, Marpenoth 21st, Thorkil, Elena, Lyssa, and Noran left Daggerford, riding north for Elorfindar’s estate, arriving there in the late afternoon. They visited with the old elf, delivering to him packages from Elena’s father and from the Duke, and talking about dwarven Illefarn. Elorfindar suggests to them that in Waterdeep they stay at the Pampered Traveller Inn.

On Marpenoth 22, they leave Elorfindar’s estate and ride on north, arriving at the Roosting Griffon in the evening. They visit with Farl and find that nothing overly exciting has been happening lately in the area. They stay the night at the Griffon.

Riding on north on Marpenoth 23, the Heroes arrive at Zundbridge in early evening and stay with the Waterdhavian soldiers at the watchtower, again with no new news of any significance.

On Marpenoth 24, the Heroes continue north, passing the Rat Hills and spooking a few dire rats, then finally arriving at the South Gate of Waterdeep in later afternoon. A guard gives them directions and they arrive at and get checked into the Pampered Traveler, renting two 2-room suites for a tenday.

END OF SESSION

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Campaign Session Report #8
Harvest Festival

Game session date: 21 December 2013

Campaign Date: 24 Eleint – 10 Marpenoth 1357 DR

Encouraged to not leave town for the next few days, the members of the squad spent those days in mostly mundane activities. They all had dinner with Elena’s father – Kelson Darktreader – on the evening of the 24th, where they learned that the Duke wanted them on patrol near him during the upcoming festival activities outside the walls. Kelson also informed them that the hobgoblin prisoner they brought back had been talking – thanks to a combination of illusion spells and zone of truth spells. They had learned that the prisoner knows no more of the hierarchy of the the organization behind the problems than was revealed in the letter recovered on him. Also, he revealed that The Chill was based out of a camp somewhere in the northern edge of the Trollbark Forest. The prisoner also revealed – much to everyone’s relief – that there is no dragon with the lizardfolk in the marsh, but that the lizardfolk are building up a hoard inside the old shipwreck to try and attract a dragon. Finally, the prisoner does not know the identity of the spy in Daggerford, but knows several drop points for leaving or picking up messages for/from the spy.

Over the next few days the members of the squad work on personal projects, pick up some minor magic items, and try and relax a bit. On the 26th, sign up in the festival contests opened up and Elena signed up for the archery contest, Throkil for the Game of Forms, and Kratos for the foot race. Noran was busy taking bets on all the activities.

On the 28th of Eleint, Elena’s great-grandfather Lord Elorfindar Floshin arrived in town, staying Elena’s father’s residence for the duration of the festival. Lord Bogdan of Bowshot arrived as well, as did a few other regional nobles. The next day Baroness Priann also finally arrived, bringing with her an entourage nearly twice the size of any other visiting dignitary.

The Harvest Festival officially began on Eleint 30th. The archery contest took place in the morning. Elena was first paired off against Cork, and won, but in the next round went up against her Uncle Filvendor and lost. In the end, she placed 3rd in overall points and won 50 gold coins and a quiver of 20 masterwork arrows.

In the afternoon was the Game of Forms – a magical competition in which spellcasters use either transformation magic or illusion magic to take on the form of other creatures, trying to best their opponents form with each new form. Thorkil beat his fellow student at Delfen’s tower, Bryn, then he beat the bard Janssen, and finally beat out Korbus the Gnome to win the competition, earning 500 gold coins, a scroll of beast shape I and a potion of alter self for his efforts.

The next day was Higharvestide and the first official day of guard duty for the squad on their latest rotation. They reported to the fairgrounds to be near the Duke and his family and visiting dignitaries, but encountered no more problems than petty thieves and fist fights. Kratos was allowed to take an hour off to compete in the footrace, where he placed 3rd, winning a 10-pound sack of wheat for his efforts.

Marpenoth 1 was the last day of the Harvest Festival. Sir Frederic of Cromm’s Hold won the Ring-and-Wreath as well as the Tilt. Again, the squad encountered only minor rabble-rousers and thieves during their shift.

The squad was awakened early in the morning of the 2nd of Marpenoth by one of the Duke’s personal guards and asked to report to Commander Sherlen’s office. There, they find the commander, along with the duke himself, Elena’s father and Lord Llewellyn. The duke explains that sometime in the night Baron Agwain of Secomber kidnapped the duke’s sister – Lady Bronwyn – and fled the town with a dozen or so of his men. The Duke asks the squad to pursue them via the most direct route through the Laughing Hollow. He offers them a horse from his own stables as extra recompense for this duty. As soon as they have their horses and gear, the squad sets off, leaving town right before sunrise.

Several hours later, as they ride through the hills east of town and near the edge of the forest, the squad is ambushed by a half dozen of Agwain’s men. They kill a couple of them, capture a couple of them and a couple of them got away.

Sometime later, after entering the forest, they are accosted by eight centaurs who are not happy to see them and at first did not want to let them pass. The squad convinces the centaurs they must and they allow them to proceed.

An hour or so later, deeper in the forest, they come across four black bears feeding on honey in a dead tree, and Elena uses her ranger’s wiles to soothe the anger and fear in the bears and allow the squad to pass. A short time after this they find three ghouls feeding on the fairly fresh corpses of one of Agwain’s guards and his horse. They dispatch the ghouls and burn the bodies of the guard and his horse to prevent them from rising, and proceed on.

Near dusk, they are in a very thick part of the forest, forced to walk while leading their horses. As they move through the dense brush, the Lady Bronwyn appears before them, having escaped her captor, but as the squad makes plans to continue after Baron Agwain, he charges out of the brush with two of his men and challenges the squad. Before the fight can begin, the baron’s men drop, felled by goblin arrows, and the baron himself is wounded. Thorkil, thinking quickly, drops a sleep spell on the baron and knocks him out, then leaving Lyssa and Noran to guard the prisoner and the lady, Thorkil, Elena, and Kratos pursue the goblins.

They find the goblins – ten of them – not too far away, shooting at someone or something in the shrubbery on the edge of a great valley – the Laughing Hollow. Taking out the goblins, they find they have just rescued Melendrach, King of the Wood Elves, who is very grateful. He has three arrows in his left thigh and was unable to walk without assistance. They get him to safety, gather their companions and Lady Bronwyn, and heal the king’s wounds. The centaurs arrive again and the king has them guard the camp while everyone rests. Before turning in for the night, both Elena and Thorkil take time to visit with Melendrach about personal matters – Elena talking with the king about her great-grandfather and other relatives and Thorkil talking about ancient Illefarn.

On Marpenoth 3rd, the squad rises with the King. He thanks them again and gives each of them a leather medallion with his personal sigil on it, telling them anytime they return to the forest they should wear it as it grants safe passage and ensures that the centaurs and pixies won’t challenge them. He sends one of the younger centaurs – Kentaros – to guide them out of the forest and bids them farewell. Kentaros leads them along a path that gets them out of the forest about 2 hours sooner than they would have if they had simply retraced their steps.

Back in Daggerford near nightfall, they take Lady Bronwyn to the palace and turn over Agwain and his men they captured. The duke is still gone, but Llewellyn will have Gwydion contact the duke using his magic and tell him to return.

On Marpenoth 4, the squad is back on normal town patrol. The find out that duke is returning to town, but won’t be back until the next day some time. That evening, Sherlen calls the squad into her office and gives them another out-of-town assignment. The last southbound caravan of the season is leaving Waterdeep in a few days and has requested that Daggerian troops scout the road as far south as The Way Inn (the southern limit of Daggerford’s influence). She is sending the squad on this assignment, with orders to observe and reconnoiter, but not to engage unless engaged.

The squad is up early on Marpenoth 5 and out the gates by sunrise. They meet a few travelers along the road and stop for lunch in Gillian’s Hill, but hear of nothing out of the ordinary from anyone. They reach Liam’s Hold that evening and stop for the night.

On Marpenoth 6 the squad continues south, and is attacked by a hideous manticore along the way this day, which circles them about 20 feet in the air, flinging spikes from its tail. After Thorkil uses his enlarge person spell on Kratos, the now-giant half-orc leaps into the air and slices one of the beast’s forelimbs off and it flees, though Thorkil is confidant it will bleed out and die.

Manticore005.jpg

The rest of the 6th passes uneventfully and they squad camps in one of the prepared campsites along the road.

On Marpenoth 7, the squad hits the road and arrives in Bowshot around noon. They stop for lunch and a quick visit with Lord Bogden, then continue on their way south, arriving at the Way Inn in early evening. At the Way Inn, they meet Daulraven Redbeard, proprietor of the actual inn and defacto leader of the town. He is a friendly sort who provides the squad with a feast, tells them what news he knows, and offers to send friends of his – adventurers – into the Trollbark Forest to poke around and see if they can find the bandit camp. Daulraven also introduces them to a merchant and caravanmaster named Meldar Farwander, who is headed north and recently ran into problems around the ruins of Dragonspear Castle. Meldar, his daughter Delora, and three drovers named Ian, Finn & Dooley and a half-dozen pack mules are all that’s left of a larger caravan that was attacked by orcs and goblins, and they ask to travel north with the squad for protection.

The squad heads out on the morning of Marpenoth 8, riding all day with no troubles, and arriving at a campsite in early evening. They make it to Gillian’s Hill on the 9th, staying in the village for the night, and depart for the final leg of the journey on the 10th.

Early in the morning of the 10th, they spot trouble ahead and engage four large bugbear bandits, taking 2 of them prisoner. While they found nothing on any of the bugbears to indicate any connection to the larger bandit issues, they couldn’t be sure so took them back for interrogation by Sherlen or the duke’s men.

Back in Daggerford, Meldar was very grateful for the squad’s aid and gave them a pouch of 200 gold coins. Delora also gave them a pouch with 3 potions of cure light wounds, a potion of gaseous form, and a potion of heroism. Meldar also privately presented an old scroll to Thorkil, who later realized it was a map of the various entrances to ancient Illefarn.

The squad is summoned to see the duke, and they are told the duke is going to declare them all Heroes of Daggerford for all that they have done for the town and for the duke himself…

END SESSION

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Campaign Session Report #7
The Fog Begins to Lift

Game session date: 14 December 2013

Campaign Date: 21 Eleint – 23 Eleint 1357 DR

On the morning of the 21st, the squad rode out of Daggerford, headed for Cromm’s Hold. They arrived at the seat of the small barony after a few hours and broke for lunch. While Elena and Kratos went to visit with Baroness Priann, Thorkil, Lyssa, and Noran joined Sir Frederick in the mess hall for lunch.

Waiting their chance to speak with Priann, Kratos and Elena overheard the baroness with her builders and engineers – yelling at them, clearly not happy at the pace of repairs to the wall and tower. She finally dismissed them and the two heroes were called forward where Elena managed to convince Priann to come to Daggerford at the end of the tenday to attend the Harvest Festival. The two then went in search of the other members of their squad.

In the mess hall, Thorkil inadvertently spilled too much information to Sir Frederick about Duke Pwyll’s intentions to try and match Baroness Priann with a young nobleman from Waterdeep. By his reaction, it became obvious that the knight had his own desire for the baroness and he left a bit angry.

After everyone had eaten lunch, they remounted their rested mounts and head out, skirting the swamp and heading south-southwest. The rest of the day was uneventful and Elena found the squad a good place to camp. The night was uneventful, with wolves howling in the distance to the south the most exciting event.

The next morning, members of the squad awoke to a thick blanket of fog. Kratos climbed a massive sentinel pine, but even at the top of it he couldn’t see out of the fog. They squad broke their fast then rode on, coming to the sea cliff soon. Elena found the trail down to the tidal flats, but once off the cliff Kratos and Elena heard noise, like someone in armor trying to move quietly.

Thorkil gave orders and the squad set up in position just in time as hobgoblins appeared like shadows through the fog. Upon site of the enemy, Thorkil cast an enlarge person spell on Kratos, who stood to his now-12 ft. height. The sight of the enlarged half-orc prompted a roar and a charge from the previously unseen bugbear the hobgoblins had with them.

A furious battle ensued, with no squad member escaping completely unscathed. Only Kratos’ orc-blood kept him on his feet on more than one occasion. Eventually, the squad prevailed, and in the process managed to capture – thanks to a well-timed sleep spell from Thorkil – the hobgoblin leader.

Searching the dead and captured, they found some healing potions, a magical scabbard which was given to Kratos for his greatsword, and a magical bow and chain shirt which Elena took. The bugbear had also been wielding an adamantine heavy mace, and Kratos took it.

On the leader, they found a letter which revealed or confirmed many things – the Dragon Fangs are allied with the bandits (and may also have a dragon); the Chill are formally working for the bandits; there is a spy in Daggerford; and the bandit lord Jocko is not in charge, but is a higher up in whatever is going on.

They tied the hobgoblin captive to a horse and Elena rode double with Thorkil as the squad headed back to Daggerford. They rode all day and camped a few miles outside of Gillian’s Hill, with the night passing uneventfully. The next day they continued on to Daggerford, arriving in later morning and finding the preparations for Harvest Festival – still several days away – well under way.

The squad took their prisoner to the ducal palace and turned him over to the duke’s guards. They met with Lord Llewellyn and Kelson Darktreader, turning over copies of the letter found on the hobgoblin and giving a full report. There was much discussion about the situation, especially about the spy, and Lord Llewellyn asked the squad to remain in or very near town on the rest of their days off.

Elena also told them that she was successful in convincing Baroness Priann to attend the Harvest Festival and possibly smoothed things over in regards to the alliance with the Fox Clan of lizardfolk.

They left the palace and headed for Elena’s home to split up their loot. While Kratos was examining his new mace, he noticed a mark on it and showed it to Thorkil, who immediately recognized it as the mark of a smith of ancient Illefarn. He took the mace – with permission – and went to see the dwarven smith Dervil Ironeater. Dervil was very shocked, to say the least, to see the mace and it’s maker’s mark. He offered Thorkil 6000 gp for the mace, which was, as far as Thorkil could tell, almost double the value of the weapon. Knowing there was more to what was going on than Dervil was letting on, Thorkil said he’d only sell it if Dervil told him the truth.

The other dwarf agreed and began a tale of the last days of Illefarn 300 years ago, and of a clan that stayed behind as caretakers when all others fled. One hundred years ago, with their population dwindling, the caretakers – led by Dervil and his younger brother Derwin and youngest brother Korin – left Illefarn and came to Daggerford. Twenty years ago, Korin – never happy with leaving their ancient home – gathered together a band of clanless wanderers and headed back to Illefarn – and that was the last time Dervil heard from his youngest brother.

Dervil asked Thorkil to keep this information to himself for the moment, and Thorkil agreed. Dervil gave him the 6000 gold – in the form of 60 100-gp value trade bars. Thorkil returned to his companions and divided up the loot – telling a pseudo-truth about why Dervil wanted the mace and paid so much for it. They squad then headed for the Lady Luck and used some of their new found loot to fund a small feast and party.

END OF SESSION

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Campaign Session Report #6
Return to the Swamp

Game session date: 7 December 2013

Campaign Date: 5 Eleint – 21 Eleint 1357 DR

On the morning of the 5th of Eleint, the squad gathered for their mission into the Lizard Marsh. Commander Sherlen Spearslayer arrived and told them that Kaulbach had been recalled by her temple and that they would be joined by Noran Fole, a half-elf who wears a holy symbol of Tymora, but carried himself more like a rogue.

They saddled up and rode to Cromm’s Hold, meeting with Baroness Priann, who clearly had no love for any lizardfolk of any clan. She says about two weeks prior, Red Eye came in with a message and that was the last time she saw him.

Sir Frederic, one of Priann’s knights, tells them that he will send Seamus the hunter with them as a guide, as he knows the marsh better than most others do. The squad leaves their horses at Cromm’s Hold and goes on foot into the swamp.

Sometime later, they find a spot where a large column of lizardfolk came out of the swamp and crossed the path they are on, but there is no clue was to what clan they were of. A couple hours on and they meet up with a Fox clan scout who leads them to Red Eye’s village deep in the marsh.

Thorkil presents Red Eye with Duke Pwyll’s message and then the squad is invited to partake of some food while Red Eye reads the message and pens a reply. They notice that the rest of the members of the clan treat them warily, almost as if afraid of them.

A half-hour later or so and Red Eye exits his hut and gives Thorkil his reply to the duke. The squad bids Red Eye farewell and sets out to return to Cromm’s Hold, guided by both Seamus and by Longfang, one of Red Eye’s scouts. An hour later they are ambushed by members of the Dragon Fang clan, one of whom is a shaman with an amulet that summons a huge monitor lizard. The fight is brutal, but the squad prevails and collects several items from the dead lizardfolk.

They decide to send the weapons the Dragon Fang members had along with the amulet of lizard summoning back to Red Eye with Longfang. They take a couple other magic items the shaman had – a potion of barkskin and bracers of armor +1 – as well as a dagger with Oleg’s maker’s mark on it. Longfang bids them safe journey, and heads back into the swamp.

Now back in familiar territory to Seamus, he leads the squad the rest of the way out of the march and back to Cromm’s Hold, where they spend the night.

On Eleint 6, they head back to Daggerford and give the Duke the reply from Red Eye. The Duke thanks them and tells them that they have aided the town in formalizing an alliance with the Fox Clan. They have lunch at the Lady Luck, then split up to their various normal jobs. That evening, one of the Duke’s pages visits them each in turn and presents them a pouch of 50 ep.

The next several days pass with the heroes working at the forge, scribe’s guild, hunting, or tattoo parlor. They hear that Noran spends his days gambling at the Lady Luck, and apparently doing well enough to get by.

On 11 Eleint they return to active duty and spend the next tenday doing routine patrols in and around the town, with nothing out of the ordinary happening. They do hear word of hobgoblins still in the area, to the south of Daggerford mostly. Farmers tell of seeing them coming and going into the Lizard Marsh. They squad makes plans to do their own patrol along the southeastern edge of the swamp after they are off regular duty.

END OF SESSION

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Campaign Session Report #5
Guarding Coins

Game session date: 23 November 2013

Campaign Date: 14 Eleasias – 4 Eleint 1357 DR

On the morning of the Eleasias 14, the party set out in search of the two hobgoblins that got away. They tracked them towards the hilly forests to the west, and found the two along with two more arguing outside a cave. After a brief battle they dispatched the four hobgoblin bandits and searched them and the cave as well, finding a few hundred gold worth of stolen (but unmarked) foodstuffs. The telling thing was finding a few letters in the cave indicating the hobgoblins were part of an organization known as The Chill, and that a hobgoblin known as Gorik (which the conversation of the four hobgoblins overheard before the battle indicated was killed the night before) was in charge of northern operations. The letters were signed by Jocko.

The party left the cave and headed for the Roosting Griffon, selling the foodstuffs they recovered from the hobgoblins for 300 gp. They stayed the night at the inn and then returned home the next day.

On 15 Eleasias the foursome returned to Daggerford. They split up their loot and sold it, and Elena reported their findings to her father. Kratos begins working on a new sword. Thorkil works at the scribe’s guild.

The next few days were spent with each person working on personal business or personal goals, but on 21 Eleasias the squad reported for a new Tenday of official duty. They spent that day and the next on standard patrol throughout town, dealing with arguing merchants, drunk farmers, and petty thieves.

After dinner on the 22nd, the four were called into Sherlin’s office. The commander informs them that they are being given a special assignment starting the next day. They will ride north to Zundbridge and there meet up with an armored wagon bringing newly minted copper, silver, and electrum coins to Daggerford, and escort it on the rest of its journey.

The four leave on the morning of the 23rd and ride north, with the day passing uneventfully. They reach one of the established campsites and settle in for the night, with Elena going hunting and bringing back a good sized buck.

On the 24th the ride is again uneventful and they reach the Roosting Griffon Inn. There is still talk of bandits among the patrons, but there has been no new activity. Someone does mention spotting a fire-breathing dog nearby, and the four postulate that it might be a hellhound. After being there a few minutes, Elena’s great-grandfather Lord Elorfindar and great uncle Darfin Longwalker come in, along with several guards. Elorfindar is delighted to see his great-granddaughter and her friends and the two elves sit with the guards. Elorfindar had been on a business trip to Waterdeep and informs that the road for them was good between the Griffon and Zundbridge, but around the Rat Hills (south of Waterdeep) the dire rats were being stirred up by exterminators in the hills.

The night passes uneventfully, and the next morning the four continue north. They pass a farmer on a wagon, who informs them of seeing huge dog prints by his house the night before last. The four reach Zundbridge by early evening. Zundbridge is a Waterdhavian outpost of dwarven construction. Ages ago the human wizard Zund conceived the plans and hired dwarves to construct the bridge and watchtower. Thorkil relates the legend that Zund used magic to merge a stone golem with the bridge, which can, in times of great danger, come out of the bridge to defend the crossing.

They meet up with the wagon and it’s crew: Stoval Goldbeard (the driver and dwarf in charge) and two human guards named Goran and Landers. The Waterdhavian guards formally turn over the wagon to Thorkil and his guards and everyone retires for the evening, with the foursome setting up in the campsite across the road from the watchower.

On the morning of the 26th everyone was up early and on the road south. The day’s ride was uneventful and they reached the Griffon just before dark. A group of hunters in the common room reported seeing lizardman tracks on the road near the campsite to the south of the inn, determining there were at least four of them, possibly as many as nine.

The journey south continues on the 27th, with wagon falling victim to a trap in the road, and the lizardmen attack. After a rough fight, the foursome prevail and dispatch the lizardmen bandits, all of whom seem to be members of the Dragon Fang clan. In a disturbing revelation, a masterwork quality morning star carried by the leader of this raiding party had Derval ironeater’s maker’s mark. They also find 152 electrum coins on the lizardmen, all of which were minted recently in Baldur’s Gate.

The party finds a safe place to camp and then continues on in to Daggerford the next day, arriving in town in early evening and reporting to the Duke on what happened. The Duke keeps the morning star and the Baldurian coins as evidence.

The squad spends the next two days on routine patrol of town, with no significant incidents. In the evening of the 30th, they find out that Derval Ironeater, Oleg, and every other smith in town were called before the Duke. It turned out the morningstar had been made by Derval for an adventurer two months ago, and the dwarven smith had proof of the order, including detailed description of the what the weapon would look like. The Duke issues an official decree that there are to be no sales of anything – weapon or otherwise – to the Dragon Fang clan, but he does agree to allow the sale of metal spearheads and arrowheads to the Fox Clan.

The next day, with their official duties being over for a while, the four decide to head north in pursuit of the reported hell hound. The ride north to a campsite and camp, and Elena hunts and kills and red elk cow.

On Eleint 2nd, they ride on to the Griffon where they trade the remainder of the meat from the elk for rooms for the night. Farrel, the innkeeper, reports that the night before he saw red eyes staring at him through the back gate.

The next morning they set off in pursuit of the hell hound and find two sets of tracks, and follow them to the edge of the woods to the west. They encounter a pair of hell hounds and destroy them, and find their den under a huge old tree. In the den they find a few bodies and a handful of other items.

They ride back to Daggerford the next day, arriving in the evening and find out that the Duke wants to see them. When they report to the Duke he informs them that he is sending them on a special mission into the Lizard Marsh to find Red Eye – the leader of the Fox clan – and give him a message. They are given explicit orders to not hunt down or pursue Dragon Fang clan members, but to defend themselves as best they can if attacked by them.

END OF SESSION

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Campaign Session Report #4
The Death of Jeph

Game session date: 16 November 2013

Campaign Date: 29 Flamerule – 13 Eleasias 1357 DR

A couple days passed in Daggerford as the four companions rested and recovered, but they were eventually called before Duke Pwyll, who thanked them for their services and presented them with a 300 gold bounty for the head of the bandit Sender Three-fingers.

Thorkil had a contact via his posters he’d placed around town – a farmer with a giant rat issue. He and Elena decided to investigate the situation, but Jeph and Lyssa declined. They went to Commander Sherlen to see if she might have someone to send along and she suggested they speak to Oleg the Smith as his younger brother Kratos had recently joined the militia, but was currently off duty.

The two friends went to Oleg’s Smithy and met Kratos, a large half-orc warrior, who agreed to accompany them to the farm. Farmer Joe’s homestead was about an hour’s ride outside of town and they were soon there. Meeting with Joe, he told them that the rats were located in the ruins of an old tower on the edge of his property. Thorkil was aware that the tower dated from about 300 years ago and was an old watch tower. Only the first floor remained now, and not much of it besides the walls.

Inside the ruins, they found lots of sign of giant rats along with an old rusty sword. Investigating some stairs leading down, Elena was attacked by a giant rat running up the stairs, and two others followed it.

The three companions killed the rats then proceeded down the stairs to eradicate any more rats. In the small basement of the tower, they found a collapsed wall that was apparent to Thorkil it had been an addition after the tower was constructed. Following the tunnel on the other side of the collapsed wall, they encountered yet more rats and then soon found the main rat’s nest and finally eradicated the last of the vermin. The area where they found the nest also turned out to be an ancient tomb, and the Illuskan runes on the sarcophagus proclaimed this to be the tomb of Ragnar the Red, but none of the three companions had any idea who Ragnar was.

They opened the sarcophagus and inside found the ancient remains of a warrior clad in rusting chainmail. There were some gems and coins in the tomb as well, along with a mithral falchion of elven make, with, “Elf-friend. Presented to Ragnar the Red” inscribed in elven script on the blade.

They returned to Daggerford and did some research on the tower and the sword, but didn’t find much of use.

The next day as Thorkil, Elena, Kratos, Lyssa, and Jeph at dinner together, they heard some folks talking about some red robed strangers hanging around the Happy Cow and asking about a friend and his spellbook.

Asking around, they learned that the strangers were probably Red Wizard’s of Thay. Thorkil returned to Delfen’s tower while Elena, Kratos, and Lyssa wandered by the Cow. In an alley, they saw three red robed men and Lyssa sneaked down the alley to eavesdrop. She returned 10 minutes later to inform her two friends that the strangers were indeed Red Wizards, that they were talking about their “friend” in the Cow – and when they said “friend” they clearly didn’t actually mean a real friend, and that they left the alley to return to where they were staying.

The three friends headed over to Delfen’s tower to inform Thorkil what they had learned. At the tower, Thorkil had been talking with Delfen about the rumors, which Delfen had also heard, and Delfen warned Thorkil that Red Wizards – even less experienced ones – were very dangerous. He strongly suggested that Thorkil and his friends not approach them unless absolutely necessary.

When the other three arrived, they all discussed what Lyssa had found out and while talking another guard arrived at the tower to inform Thorkil that all guards were being called to active duty the next morning in response to the presence of the Red Wizards in town. Everyone eventually split up and headed home to get some rest before the next day.

In the morning – Midsummer festival – they all reported to the barracks and took their meal there. Commander Sherlen then gave all guards a rundown on what was going on, informed Thorkil he had been promoted to Sergeant, and then assigned duties. Thorkil’s squad was given the task of going to the Cow to question Fulbar Hardcheese – owner of the Cow.

At the Cow, they found a small crowd standing outside, complaining that the place wasn’t open yet. They dispersed the crowd and checked the door to find it locked. Looking through a window, they saw signs of a struggle in the common room. Around back, they found the back door open and went inside, with Thorkil ordering Lyssa to stand at the door and keep watch.

They examined the signs of struggle and then heard noise from the basement. Thorkil sent Lyssa for reinforcements, then the other four proceeded down the stairs to find the three Red Wizards holding Fulbar hostage, with drawn daggers brandished at the halfling. Feeling they had no choice if they wanted to keep Fulbar safe, the four companions made their presence known and moved in.

The wizards used magic to great effect, wounding everyone but an especially devastating ray of fire completely immolated Jeph, reducing him to a pile of ash. Only his sword survived. Thorkil, Elena, and Kratos killed two of the wizards but the third one used a scroll and vanished, with Thorkil unable to identify the spell used.

The reinforcements arrived and Thorkil told Commander Sherlen what happened. She dismissed them, giving them the rest of the day off, and giving them permission to take Jeph’s sword and remains to the temple of Tymora.

At the temple of Tymora, Bando the Lame took possession of the remains and promised to send them to his family. He approved of Thorkil’s idea to take Jeph’s sword and hang it on the pillar of remembrance at the Lady Luck Tavern, which the four companions did.

The next day Delfen informed Thorkil of what had been learned from Fulbar – apparently he was an adventurer in his younger days and had apparently stolen a powerful magic item and a spellbook from the Red Wizards. The Duke took possession of the item (the name and description of which were not given, for security reasons) but Fulbar was allowed to keep everything else. Because no one knew where they wizard that escaped went to, she strongly suggested that the four companions not leave Daggerford for at least a week, to let things settle down. Delfen also gave Thorkil one of the two traveling spellbooks recovered from the Red Wizards.

The four then spent the rest of the tenday doing normal work, with Thorkil learning and copying several spells from the Thayan spellbook Delfen gave him, which included some unique spells he’d never heard of. Kratos worked at Oleg’s smithy during this week, working on swords and on spear heads. Elena worked on some new arrows, and also sent “Elf-friend” along with her grandfather as he went to visit his father. Lyssa worked at Derf’s Skin Art and plied her evening tricks.

At the end of the week, Elena’s grandfather returned with the sword and told her that her great-grandfather had actually originally given the sword to Ragnar the Red (also known as Ragnar the Bold), an Illuskan warchief who was a friend of the elves and helped them defend themselves against goblins and lizardfolk alike. He strongly suggested she keep the sword and learn to wield it with skill.

Later that day the four met for lunch at the Lady Luck, and while there Fulbar Hardcheese came in, came over to their table and thanked them for helping him last week. He told them they were always welcome at the Cow and gave them a few coins as a reward.

Listening to the conversation at the tavern, they overheard people talking about some hobgoblins causing problems up near the Roosting Griffon Inn, about half way between Daggerford and Zundbridge. The four decided to investigate the situation, especially considering they were suffering from cabin fever with being confined to town for a week. Needing a healer to go with them, Thorkil checked with the local temples and at the temple of Tempus found a young cleric of Tyr named Content Not Found: kaulbach looking for adventure, and she agreed to go along.

They rode north, and the day was uneventful. They found one of the prepared campsites that dot the road and set up camp. That night, during Thorkil’s watch, they were attacked by a mysterious black dog that jumped through shadows. Thorkil identified it as a rizos, which is the result of a hell hound mating with a normal mastiff. They eventually killed the rizos, but not before it wreaked some havoc on the party.

The next day they rode on to the Roosting Griffon Inn and Farl the innkeeper told them the hobgoblins had killed some folks a couple days ago and taken a wagon full of goods, and they had been sneaking around his inn at night. After lunch, they rode on to another campsite and laid an ambush for the hobgoblins.

The hobgoblins took the bait and attacked, but had prepared well with archers set up to rain arrows on the party. After a vicious fight, they dropped all but two of the hobgoblins – including the leader who turned out to be half-hobgoblin/half-orc. They chose to rest for the evening and the next morning intended to follow the trail of the two hobgoblins that fled the scene.

END OF SESSION

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Campaign Session Report #3
Chasing Bandits

Game session date: 9 November 2013

Campaign Date: 24 Flamerule – 28 Flamerule 1357 DR

After Elena returned to Bowshot, she took Jeph to a cleric for healing then reported to Lord Bogdan. His Lordship then sent a small contingent of guards and a few wagons back with Elena to the bandit cave to load up the recovered goods. Everyone arrived back in Bowshot eventually and were reunited with a healed Jeph. Lord Bogdan paid the party for bounties on the bandits they did manage to kill or capture, and asked them to go after Sender Three-fingers at first light.

The next day, after arranging to have a local Bowshot merchant heading to Daggerford take along their wagon and the unmarked recovered trade goods, the four set out after Sender, initially returning to the cave and picking up the trail. They followed the trail north along the edge of the Misty Forest, but found it crossed a wide trail left by a herd of wild aurochs. Elena discovered the bandits crossed the cattle trail, but then looped back and followed the cattle northeast.

A few hours later they came across an aurochs killed and butchered within the last several hours, but as they examined the carcass they were attacked by three axebeaks, drawn in by the scent of blood. The carnivorous and flightless birds were brutal in their attack, but the party killed two and the third fled.

The four continued on the trail of the bandits and eventually found where they left the cattle trail and turned northwest, then looped west. Following still, they came to a low rise that offered an extensive view north and south of the High Road, about 5 miles away. They could see a small group of wagons heading north along the road and a caravan headed south. Near the road, they saw the three bandits, making a bee-line for the three carts.

Spurring their horses, the four rode towards the road, with Thorkil and Jeph getting their first. They lost sight of the bandits, but rode down the three wagons to find it was the Bowshot merchant hauling their own stuff. He told them that three hunters asked him for water, then headed west towards the sea.

When Elena and Lyssa caught up with them, Thorkil explained the situation and the four decided to camp at the nearby campsite before continuing in pursuit of the bandits the next day. Not long after setting up camp, the caravan they had seen traveling south arrived and asked to share the campsite.The caravan was bound from Waterdeep to Scornubel, and the four companions joined the caravan master for dinner in his tent. Eventually Thorkil retired to study his spellbook and Jeph begged off to rest, but Elena and Lyssa spent a very enjoyable night with the caravan master in his tent.

The next morning, they picked up the trail of the bandits. The trail continued west a brief ways before it turned south and it became clear they were headed for the Trollbark Forest – where Elena’s father had said there were rumors of a bandit camp. But, before they got there the four finally caught up with Sender and the other two and overcame them, killing Sender and one other and capturing one.

They returned to Bowshot where Lord Bogdan gave them a payment for bounties on Sender’s two cronies, and took the captured one into custody, but told them they would have to claim Sender’s bounty from Duke Pwyll himself. The next day they set out to return to Daggerford.

Not having a wagon along with them, what took three days to ride down only took two to ride back north.

They returned to Daggerford in the evening of the second day and reported in to Commander Sherlen Spearslayer, to Elena’s father, and to Thorkil’s superiors at the scribe’s guild. Elena’s father took possession of Sender’s remains and told them he would bring the attention to the Duke, and for them to expect a summons from the Duke within the next day or three, depending on how busy he was.

They spent the next couple of days resting and relaxing, and selling off the unmarked (and therefore untraceable) goods recovered from Sender’s cave near Bowshot, then spending some of their new-found income on upgrades to arms, armor and equipment.

END OF SESSION

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