This week’s episode began with the party having just taken a short rest in the Kruthik’s hive. When they emerged back into the main area, they found that the Iron Circlites they’d captured were not to be trusted, and had escaped. Thankfully, they’d not cut the rope to the chamber, and the party was able to get out.
As the party made their way, they stumbled upon the Crossroads, a sort of fencing operation in the Chaos Scar that enables the civilized peoples of Restwell Keep to trade with the savage races of the Chaos Scar. Restwell Keep has been known to “disappear” people into the Scar through the Crossroads, as well. See the Crossroads entry in the wiki under Places.
As Alston, AshiBeni and AshiBeni’s familiar raven (no name yet!) scouted the Crossroads, the rest of the group stayed behind. They found a human caged in the Gibbet Tree with three hobgoblins standing guard. A tiefling female was training crested felldrakes just outside the trading post, and a group of various humanoids were inside. The boneyard appeared to have restless dead syndrome.
Being they carried a large amount of loot from Fraley’s treasure hoard, the party decided to leave well enough alone at the Crossroads and headed back to Restwell Keep. They were met with suspicious askance glances from the townspeople and a close eye by the town guards. After asking around, it was found that Drysdale and his men were blaming the party for the fracas with the crested felldrakes a few days before. They rented a room from the disapproving Mother Aran at the Stumbling Giant, and decided to split up and investigate happenings and complete quests.
Alston found his way to Fountain Square and asked around about Drysdale. He found out that Drysdale had requested that a platoon of dwarven mercenaries from Hammerfast come down to Restwell Keep to bolster security. Another rumor revealed that a gold dragon worshipper of Erathis may also be on the way to assist with the problems in the Keep.
AshiBeni met up with her old schoolmate, Ruanna Lorewise, just outside the private apartments row in the Outer Bailey and chatted about old times. Ruanna recommended to AshiBeni that the party leave the Keep and lay low for a while. It seems that AshiBeni’s adoptive brother, Fo, has finally found a god to suit his paladinhood, but Ruanna didn’t know which one it was.
Karl met with Cousin Reginald about his foray into Grandfather Dystrachan’s hoardspace. Through the course of the conversation, Cousin Reginald revealed that he expected the party to recover a specific item; a silver plate engraved with images of fish. When Karl revealed his contract for the services of the Iron Circlites written in their own blood, Reginald grew very excited.
Gnarsh and Abraxus met with Oneus Earthmane just a few doors down and Oneus finally presented them with the staff the party had recovered from the Pillar of Eyes (Episode 5) and the crystal shard they recovered from the cavern of the weird drakes (Episode 8). It turned out that the crystal and the staff could easily fuse into one item; a +1 staff with a concealing and pushing daily power. The power’s command word is: “Skidousch!”
Meanwhile, the conversation between Karl and Cousin Reginald had taken an ugly turn, when Karl revealed the presence of the goblet of eyes (Held on Abraxus). Cousin Reginald then demanded Karl turn over the goblet, and sent two of his thugs with him to procure it. As Karl stepped outside Cousin Reginald’s private quarters, Gnarsh and Abraxus were just leaving Oneus’, and AshiBeni was standing nearby with Ruanna. Alston was nowhere to be seen.
What happened next could appropriately be called a klusterfunk. AshiBeni’s raven familiar (Noanammie?) tried to fly to Karl’s shoulder, and the thug knocked it to the ground. Karl attempted to flee, fruitlessly yelling at the town guards to attack, and he was knocked to the ground as well. Abraxus and Gnarsh closed on the thugs as Cousin Reginald emerged from his private apartment. Cousin Reginald immediately sensed the evil of the goblet of eyes held in Abraxus breast pocket, and grabbed for it. Abraxus resisted, and Cousin Reginald flooded his mind with wicked fantasies that left Abraxus dazed. AshiBeni tried to use Mage Hand to prevent Cousin Reginald to get ahold of the goblet, but it was no use. Once in his grasp, Cousin Reginald threw off his disguise as a foppish dandy, and revealed his true form; and 9 foot tall devil with burnt red skin, malicious curving horns, and huge outstretched bat-wings. Massive Evilgasm! He burst skyward with the goblet, leaving his thugs to fend for themselves.
The thugs tried to bolt for the gate out of Restwell Keep, but the gate slammed shut, and the town guard was able to subdue them and Ruanna. In one last quick move, AshiBeni turned invisible and saved herself from being imprisoned.
For several days Karl, Gnarsh, and Abraxus were held in the jail of Restwell Keep. Karl shared a cell with one Tordek Wyrmsbane, a cousin to Carsaadi Wyrmsbane, the man-at-arms killed by the weird drakes in Episode 5. AshiBeni was able to buy the loyalty of a town guard, and she and Alston set to work freeing the prisoners. It was a tense rescue, and they almost didn’t pull it off, but in the end they were successful. Tordek took off by himself, vowing to never set eyes upon the Chaos Scar again. The group was reunited with its gear, and left Restwell Keep, knowing full well that their next visit would not be a welcoming one.
| Karl Fraley
| AshiBeni ’RainCloud
The party received 140 XP each (700 Total) for escaping from the jail, and an additional 50 XP each (250 Total) for freeing Tordek Wyrmsbane. No treasure was gained in this episode, leaving a 1 parcel (Level 2) deficit for this week.
The party failed a rather long and complex skill challenge in dealing with Cousin Reginald, and succeed at a complexity 4 skill challenge to escape from the jail of Restwell Keep. No combat encounters were undertaken