After returning to Sandpoint, the group updated Sheriff Hemlock on the situation in the farmlands, the situation seemingly being handled after the ghouls were defeated. The married couple whom the group saved were brought back in time to be cured of their affliction thus avoiding being reborn as ghouls. As the group returned to the Rusty Dragon for a late dinner and to consider the information that they had so far, a storm blew in off the coast bringing with it heavy rains, thunder, and lightning.
While eating and talking among some of the towns folks, a group of travelers arrived at the Rusty Dragon. As they shook the rain off and hung up their rain cloaks, you got a good look at them noting you’d not seen them in town before (you’ve been here long enough to get a sense for newcomers.) The group consisted of four individuals. The man, tall, swarthy with long black curly hair and handlebar mustache and the woman, shorter, beautiful with similar feature were almost assuredly of Varisian stock. The other two are half elves, twins by the look of it, and young. The only weapon among them was with the tall man, a sword with an ornate basket hilt gleaming in the lantern light, and all seemingly unarmored save one of the twins who wore simple leather armor.
The man motioned to a table and went to talk to Hack the bartender (whom you are friendly with, having been around for a while.) You cannot hear the conversation but after a while the newcomer returns the the table. Hack sends over four tankards and begins preparing to deliver them the evening’s meal. Ulfin catches Hack and asks who the newcomer is and what it seems he wanted. Hack shrugs and say quietly, “Don’t know ‘im. New to town I’d guess, which isn’t unusual to see folks come here since we’re one of the first inns that you see coming in by the South Bridge along the Lost Coast Road. He was asking for a meal and drink for his group. Oh, but he did ask if Brodert Quink live hereabouts.” After that, Hack went about his business.
The meal and drinks delivered, the group paid some attention to the conversation. Most of it was relatively mundane chatter about travel up from Magnimar, but one of the twin was heard to remark “Do you think she owns this place?” to which the tall man replied “Can’t be sure, but maybe.”
The group approached the newcomers to welcome them to the town and were invited to sit. They introduced themselves as a group of adventurers who had come up from Magnimar in search of “roads not traveled and knowledge not known.” Introductions were made: the man Kels van Doone, the Lady Arianna, and the Trelane brothers. Kels immediately noticed the badges of your office and gave what seemed a sincere thanks for the welcome and the round of drinks. As he took out his pipe, he insisted that they repay the warm welcome with a bit of lively entertainment. When he motioned to the twins, they produced instruments (a handheld drum and a pipe) and began playing a lively Varisian dance tune. Arianna stood and with a smile begain twirling and whirling among the tables exhibiting a skill at Varisian dance. Most enjoyed the unexpected entertainment althought one wife pulled her husband out as he watched Arianna with a smile.
All of this came to a halt when Ameiko arrived. It was apparent from the outset that she knew Kels and that her attitude towards him was cool and reserved. Kels’ compatriots stopped what they were doing and came over to join him as he was talking to Ameiko. The twins greeted Ameiko by name while the woman was unknown to Ameiko, though Ameiko did ask about someone named Tara whome Kels claimed had decided to take “another path” (to which Ameiko replied in a somewhat snide way that it sounded like “she’d finally had an original thought” and Kels somewhat insincere retort that he was “wounded by the comment.”) After a terse and awkward conversation, Ameiko excused herself to tend to inn business with Hack in the back room and Kels suggested a bit more entertainment. After a time you realized Ameiko must have left the inn by another exit because you do not see her come back through the common room.
The next morning you visited Quink to inform him that someone was in town looking for him. He couldn’t think of why at first and inquired as to why it would interest you. Upon admitting that you were just letting him know as a friendly gesture, he thanked you and it did occur to him that he’d remembered a conversation during his recent visit to Magnimar where he remarked to some acquaintances that he had some work that needed doing. Perhaps they were a referral. In any case, he wasn’t concerned that they meant him harm. From Quink’s home you went to see Ameiko at Kaijitsu manor. A servant answered the door and once you stated your business bade you to remain in the entry way while he fetched his mistress. While waiting for Ameiko, Valadon (whose relationship with Ameiko has been taken to another level it seems) comes down to say hello while Ameiko finishes whatever she had been doing. Ameiko joined the group and when you brought the newcomers to town, she explained that Kels, the two half elves, and the woman Tara she’d mentioned was the group of adventurers that she was a member of during her years of adventuring before she came back to Sandpoint. They had parted on unfriendly terms based on some disagreement which she did not elaborate on. When asked about what intentions she thought they had, she explained further that while it wasn’t beyond Kels to participate in something less than legal, she couldn’t think of any obvious nefarious reasons for him to be in Sandpoint. She did agree to keep eyes and ears open in case something should present itself, though she wouldn’t go out of her way to involve herself in Kels and company’s affairs any more.
The group had spent some time gathering some information about Foxglove Manor:
Foxglove Manor is over 80 years old, and has traditionally, if not physically, been the seat of the Foxglove family for that whole time. Some sort of tragedy struck the family a few decades ago, and no one’s lived there since. Common rumor holds that the place is haunted.
Foxglove Manor is known as the “Misgivings” by some locals, particularly by Varisians. It certainly has a bad reputation-sightings of strange lights in the attic windows, muffled sounds of screaming from above and below, and even rumors of a huge bat-winged devil living in the caves below the manor are but a few of the tales told about the place. The Foxglove family lived there as recently as 2 decades ago, but then a fire burned down the servants’ building, Cyralie Foxglove was found dead-burnt and dashed on the rocks below the cliffs behind the house – and Traver Foxglove was found in his bedroom, dead by his own hand. The children, including young Aldern Foxglove, were sent away to be raised in Korvosa by distant relations.
Aldern Foxglove recently returned to live in the manor, but he had a hell of a time hiring locals to aid him in the reconstruction and repair of the old building. Until Aldern moved back in, the place was cared for by a man named Rogors Craesby (a retired innkeeper who lost an ear in a bar fight many years ago) who came in 3 days a week from Sandpoint to air the place out, check for squatters, and make minor repairs.
Foxglove Manor was built decades ago by Vorel Foxglove, a merchant prince from Magnimar. He and his family lived there for 20 years before the entire family perished from disease. The surviving Foxgloves of Magnimar shunned the place for 40 years, until Traver Foxglove moved back in.
To be continued…