Rise of the Runelords

Coded Log Book

The next morning, Drazz comes down to breakfast in the common room with a angry look on his face.
“Fucking elves” he keeps muttering.

“I have gotten about as far as I can go in decoding this journal, which is what I believe this book is. There are dated entries in it going back at least a year. However, as I have no real working knowledge of Elvish and it is an integral part of the code, I cannot find the key to the cipher to determine what the contents are. I need someone with a working knowledge of Elvish and of linguistics to help me decode it. I feel this text has the potential to be very important to the situation we discussed last night; however, I am also leery of letting anyone who is not part of our group actively study it.”

“I am at a loss as to how to proceed.”

With that he started eating bacon.

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Conspiracy Theories

The evening before the group goes to try to meet the Lord-Mayor of Magnimar, Drazz calls the group into his room.

He’s been attempting to decode the ledger book and is making some headway but still has not successfully cracked the code yet.
However, he has some serious concerns that he needs to share with the group.

The note he found after the attack on the serpent-woman (he’s still trying to figure out what manner of creature she was) along with what was going on in Sandpoint has led him to some theories.

We know that The Thassalonian Empire was broken up into seven parts, each based upon one of the great cardinal sins (Pride, Lust, Sloth, Wrath, Greed, Gluttony) and each section was ruled by a Rune-Lord of great magical power.
We know that the catacombs under Sandpoint were some kind of temple to the sin of Wrath, we think the Rune-Lord of Wrath may have been the woman we saw represented by statues.
We know that one of the symbols of the Thassalonian Emipre is the Sihedron Rune (the seven point star) which we have seen in carvings all through the catacombs.

We now know that the murders in Sandpoint and in Magnimar (and the creepy ghouls in the haunted house) were due to a cult of murderers/assassins, led by serpent-woman and who carved the sihedron rune into their victims.

Now we have evidence of a much larger conspiracy.
The serpent-woman was the leader of THIS cell of the cult. There are apparently other cells out there. Drazz thinks they are also led by these kinds of serpent-women.
They are harvesting the souls of the dead through some kind of magic that is centered on the sihedron rune and they are looking for greedy souls.
They are harvesting the souls for their master.

I think that this serpent-woman was a lietenant for some bigger bad.
They are using thassalonian rune magic to gain souls, particularly greedy souls.
Which makes me think they are specifically using the brand of thassalonian magic that had to deal with the Rune-Lord of Greed.

What we need to figure out AS QUICKLY AS POSSIBLE is:
A) what the hell kind of creature this serpent-woman is and find out everything we can about their strengths/weaknesses/vulnerabilities and also what kind of society they have.
B) Find out what kind of magic was used by the Rune-Lord of Greed cause I think that is the kind of magic being used here.
C) What are these serpent-women using the souls for?
D) Who is their master? What kind of bigger bad are we looking at here?

It looks like another one of these cells is working out of a town called Turtleback Ferry.
I would suggest we go talk to the Lord Mayor. Let him know an ABBREVIATED version of the events going on.
Then we rest up, make some magical items, etc.
Then we find out about Turtleback Ferry, where it is, what kind of place, etc
Then we head over there to investigate.

I got a really bad feeling about this.

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Return to Misgivings, On to Magnimar
Moonday, 14 Lamashan 4707 to Wealday, 16 Lamashan 4707

After defeating the ghast under Foxglove Manor, the group returns to Sandpoint to heal from their wounds. The group believing they have stopped the immediate danger of the murders have determined that the ghast was not working alone and that there seems to be some connection to Magnimar based on the ghast’s deranged final words and the burned note. After a few days of rest, the group sets out for Aldern Foxglove’s townhouse in Magnimar’s Naos district.

Arriving at Magnimar (after a side trip to Foxglove where the group successfully destroyed the focus of the haunts thus freeing the manor from the evil that infested it) the group goes to the Foxglove townhouse the next morning. To their surprise a knock on the door is answered by no other than Aldern Foxglove! He and his wife Iesha welcome you to their home where they ask you to make yourself at home. After some idle banter the group is escorted to the courtyard where they are asked to sit and rest themselves while Aldern assists Iesha with some refreshments. Only moments after Aldern disappears into the house, they are set upon by two hulking, faceless monstrosities. After defeating the beasts, no trace of Aldern and Iesha are found in the house (though oddly their clothes are found in the kitchen area.)

Searching through the well appointed townhouse, it’s obvious that no one has lived here in a at least a couple of months. Gus found the only notable items when the group recognized that the key from the ghast’s area had the same lion headed adornment as the fireplace on the third floor. A hidden compartment was revealed which held money, a ledger, and the deed to Foxglove Manor. The group left the townhouse and divested themselves of some of the items found in Foxglove manor. The next day research into the deed did not reveal anything of interest. The deed however did mention the mysterious “Brothers of the Seven” and the ledger referenced “The Sevens Sawmill” which was found out to be on Kyver’s Islet towards the south of the city.

From outside, the sawmill seemed to be a normal business. After cooking up a plan to gain entrance and check things out the group encountered several workers. At first, the workers did not seem particularly suspicious…until they tried to ambush the group pulling out hideous masks brandishing war razors. The group races through the sawmill facing increasingly large groups of what they learned to be some sort of cult that housed themselves here. Ultimately, they faced the cult leader and defeated him and the remainder of his minions on the top floor.

Searching the office they found grisly “souvenirs” of faces hung around a desk and foot locker. The locker contains several books, maps, and other various oddments. The notable items are…

  • Books on general knowledge (history, nature, etc.)
  • Sea charts, maps, etchings of various natural settings, rock formations, etc.
  • Pamphlets of a reportedly forgotten school of magic called “Alchymyc”.
  • A small painting in a tube depicting a large, ornate city seemingly carved from a vast frozen waterfall.
  • More notable books:

    • A wizard’s spellbook emblazoned with two entwined snake (one red and one green.)
    • A beautifully filigreed book named “The Syrpents Tane: Fairy Tales of the Eldest” which seems to be a book of tales of notorious Fey called the Twisted.
    • A book that seems to be a ledger and/or journal but the entries are in some sort of code that no one seems to be able to crack with just a cursory analysis.

The group noticed a trap door in the ceiling that led to a rookery which obviously used the ravens to deliver messages given the items on the table. Releasing the ravens the group was able to follow the ravens to a dark clock tower in the notorious Underbridge area of Magnimar…

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Misgivings
Oathday, 10 Lamashan 4707 continued

Striking out for the manor the group went to the south bank of Foxglove River and following it through the rain approached a run down manor. There didn’t seem at first glance any evidence of there being any noticeable effort to renovate the place.

The group passed a foundation of an building that seemingly was burned down some time ago. A crumbling well beside it. A group of sickly looking crows flew down to rest on the foundation stones but flew away quickly when shooed.

The group gained entrance into the place the inside being musty and damp with mildew and mold rampant in some places but still the group was finally glad to be out of the persistent rain. Almost instantly, Drazz smelled burning hair and flesh, but it was momentary. The entrance way contains the moldering heads of various game mounted on the walls with an impressive preserved manticore in the middle of the room. After some searching around, the group noticed a woman sobbing seemingly coming from the upper floors so without hesitation the group went forward up the stairs to the right.

It was on the second floor that the group began encountering odd happenings. Entering what seems to be a child bedroom, the sound of a child draws you in. Gus has a vision of a child who thinks his parents are coming to kill him. The vision was so real that for a brief moment he believed himself to be someone else. Luckily he was able to shake off the effects before any damage was done. Going on, the group find some sort of conservatory with odd stained glass windows blocking what would normally be a breathtaking view of the Varisian Gulf. In this room was a diverse array of animals and plants: a ghostly scorpion, a gaunt man whose outstretched arms supported a dozen bats, a moth with a strange skull like pattern on its wings, and a young maiden sitting in a forest with a spider descending beside her. Continuing on to the next room, Ulfin is overtaken with the feeling of boils and tumors erupting on his face after hearing a child voice ask “what’s that on your face mommy?” Clawing and scratching enough to do himself harm, he was dragged from the room where the effect ceased. Zelkerut figured out that this house was indeed haunted by some spirit and that this was the cause of these effects. It is a form of undead energy and has some sort of a focus in the place that, if exorcised, will eliminate the evil spirits from the house. But what was the focal point?

The next room was seemingly a master bedroom that has been torn apart: furniture smashed, mattress shredded, paintings torn to peices…expect for one. That one was facing the wall. Turning it around, Gus was suddenly enraged with misogynistic hate…not finding a woman to attack he leaps to the window and throws himself out of it in blind rage. The group goes down the stairs to see if he was injured only to be assaulted in the entrance hall. The preserved manticore comes to life as a fiery apparition whose face changes to present a young woman. It strikes out with its phantom stinger to inure Drazz and set him on fire.

Gus joined the group and with a renewed respect for what this haunting was capable of, set out intending to be more careful. From then on the group encountered the following…

Ulfin was swept into a fitful dance in the music room when Zelkerut touched the piano. Through his eyes, he saw Iesha Foxglove, wife of Aldern Foxglove, radiant in beauty but in moments seemingly strangled in his arms.

A diseased rat caught in a washtub that the group put out of its misery as it squealed and squeaked in an effort to climb the wall of the basin.

A lounging room where oblivious to the fact there was no breeze the dust in front of the fireplace was being disturbed as if someone were pacing back and forth (this was avoided.)

A dining room with four more odd stained glass windows each depicting a monstrous beast rising out of smoke pouring from a seven sided box: a gnarled tree with an enraged face, an immense hook-beaked bird with sky-blue and gold plumage, a winged centaur-like creature with a lion’s lower body and snarling women’s upper torso, and a deep blue squid-like creature with red eyes.

From here, Zelkerut and Gus proceeded to look through a cozy library where they found furniture knocked about and bookends in the shape of fantastical winged creatures, one of which was missing a wing. Ulfin and Drazz held back and met then as they came back to the main hall through a drawing room (uneventfully.)

Continuing to search the second floor, the group found what seems to have been the family gallery with pictures of several generations of the Foxglove family. Gus and Ulfin entered the room and cleared the cobwebs away from the painting. Upon clearing the final painting, most of the paintings transformed into horrific images and the temperature of the room dropped such that rime formed along the walls. The effect culminated in an explosion of fungal and tumor-like growth covering everything (and everyone) in the room and then disappearing in the blink of an eye. The paintings and their transformations are noted thusly:

Vorel Foxglove, Traver’s father. Painting erupts into tumors of fungal growths and is the center point from which this spreads to the rest of the room.
Kasandra Foxglove, Vorel’s wife. Transforms into a mishapen tumor-ridden corpse.
Lorey Foxglove, daughter of Vorel and Kasandra. Transforms into a mishapen tumor-ridden corpse.
Traver Foxglove, Aldern’s father. Image grows pale as a long cut appears on his throat, blood pouring down the painting and wall below it.
Cyralie Foxglove, Traver’s wife. Transforms into a charred, blackened corpse mishapen and bent as if all her bones were instantly broken.
Aldern Foxglove, son of Traver and Cyralie. Flesh darkens with rot and decay deforming his image into a ghoul-like monster._
Sendali Foxglove, daughter of Traver and Cyralie. Image does not change.
Zeeva Foxglove, daughter of Traver and Cyralie. Image does not change.

The group continued up to the attic of the house where they found several storage rooms including equipment and materials that were to be used in the repair of the house but seemingly not touched for some time. Drawn to a room down a corridor, the group came upon a humanoid creature kneeling, stairing into a mirror sobbing. Zelkerut determined that the creature was a type of undead known as a revenant which typically stays on this earth to revenge its death against the person who killed them. No amount of talk or other distraction seemed to break the creature from its pitiful gazing at the mirror. Leaving the creature be, the group searched the small study where Zelkerut was overcome with regret and remorse of an exicting life derailed by marriage to a “shrill harpy of a wife.” Finally the last room of interest was an observatory of sorts where two more of the odd stained glass windows were presented: a dark-haired woman with pale skin, large green eyes, and a black-and-red gown; with both hands she wields a jagged iron staff. The southern window’s lower half has been broken and patched with canvas; what remains of its upper half depicts a handsome man dressed in regal finery and a crown of ivory and jade. (It was in this room that later Drazz feels compelled to thrown himself out of the window to the churning waters 200 feet below.)

The group, having surveyed the upper levels of the house descends into the basement where they discover hoards of foul, diseased rats. You dispense with the shrieking monstrosities and push on to discover a workshop of sorts behind a strong, iron door. Avoiding the inner part of the room, the group finds a set of stairs (much older than the house) exposed since someone uncovered them by smashing their way through the floor. Descending Ulfin is overtaken by a vision of ghoul pulling him but sustaining very real injuries. The stairs ended up in a limestone cave where three tunnels led into the dark, damp depths of a set of caverns.

Exploring the caverns, the group encounters a skaveling – a hideous undead bat – which seems to have been menacing the locals by looks of all the bodies. Of note, Drazz identifies one of the bodies as being of the notorious one-armed bandit Shaz “Redshiv” Bilger, suspected of organizing the robbery of nearly two dozen merchant convoys along the Lost Coast Road over the past decade. The one arm and the the distinctive white and black pearl ring he wears are enough to identify him. In addition, the group finds another entrance into these caverns by way of the well seen on the approach to the manor. Continuing into the depths of the cavern, the group comes across a couple of groups of ghouls (including a group of goblin-ghasts) that are handled easily. Finally, the group meets who they beleive to be the Skinsaw Man that Grayst Sevilla was referring to – a hideous ghast dressed in wretched finery. Seeing Gus, he screams that everyone as supposed to die and jumps to attack. In the middle of the fight, he falls to his knees and begs the group to save him…through wracking sobs he claims that “they made him do it”, the “Brothers”…the “Seven”…it was their fault…they made him kill. In the blink of an eye, his demeanor changes and he comments on how your deaths will change the world…leave things you would have done undone, then attacks with a renewed furor and fight until he finally falls.

Among the things remaining from Drazz’s initial fireball, a partial note lies among burned sketches of Gus in various poses. The note is addressed to Aldern and discusses some noteable things. While searching the room Gus is over taken with a desire to eat of a section of the mold that is growing along the south wall. Before anyone can stop him, he does but is quickly restrained by his comrades.

To be continued…

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Meeting Old Friends
Wealday, 9 Lamashan 4707 continued and Oathday, 10 Lamashan 4707

Wealday

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.

Oathday

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…

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Scarecrows
Wealday, 9 Lamashan 4707
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Murder Most Foul
Moonday, 7 Lamashan 4707 and Toilday, 8 Lamashan 4707

Moonday

Sheriff Hemlock comes to you with some grim news. There’s been a gruesome murder at the sawmill. He’s kept a lid on this for now but thinks that he’s going to be busy once this gets out and wants you to help if you’re willing. The group accepts and Sheriff Hemlock runs down the facts. Banny Harker and Katrine Vender (rumored to be having a secret tryst) were murdered in the sawmill. Katrine looks like she fell into the log splitter, but Harker was something else. His face and jaw were removed, a Sihedron Rune (as you learned the seven pointed star is called from Brodert Quink)was carved into his chest and his body was hung from hooks intended for mill equipment. Gruesome indeed. One element that is disturbing is a note that is addressed, by name, to Gus. In it is a cryptic message written on a bloody scrap of parchment that was pinned to Harker’s body with a splinter of wood.

“We have talked of this before, my Master. Now it begins. Join the Pack and it will end. —Your Lordship”

The Sheriff is quick to add that he doesn’t think the group has anything to do with this, but if this gets out he’s not so sure what the rest of the town would do so he advises that you try to be as discreet as possible for as long as possible. A study of the murder scene reveals evidence that this attack was performed by some corporeal undead creature who most likely lay in wait across the river in the marshes until nightfall then approached by water climbing onto the sawmill’s pier. Oddly, Katrine’s body did not bear the Sihedron rune upon it.

Gus and Ulfin continue to search the river while Drazz and Zelkerut go to talk with Ibor Thorn Banny’s partner at the mill (which is owned by the Scarnetti family) who found the awful scene. After some coaxing, Ibor reveals that Banny was having relations with Katrine much to the consternation of her father but is quick to say he doesn’t think Ven Vinder would have been capable of doing this to his daughter or Harker for that matter. Prodding Ibor more, Ibor also reveals in a state of anxiety that Banny had been cooking the books at the mill for some time and stolen quite a bit of money from the Scarnettis. While he had nothing to do with, he wouldn’t put it past the Scarnettis to have made an example of Harker.

A brief conversation with Ven Vinder uncovered nothing but alibis for both sets of murders and a grieving father.

Also while at the garrison, you study the bodies of the previous murder victims, Tarch Mortwell, Lener Hask, and Gedwin Tabe, three notorious con men and swindlers known well to the Sheriff. Hemlock generally believes that they tried to swindle someone worse than themselves and got killed for it. But then there’s the niggling issue of the runes carved into all their chests…

Grayst Sevilla a local Sandpoint thug was also apparently present at the first murder scene. In fact it was he who ran into a group of watchmen patrolling south of the city, feverish, babbling about razors and blood. This led the watchmen to the scene of the crime. Obviously quite insane Sevilla was committed to Erin Habe’s sanatorium on the banks of the Cougar River. the group decides to visit the sanatorium the following day.

Toilday

The group find its way to the the sanatorium. Upon entering the building and ringing the bell they are greeted by an anxious Erin Habe. After some discussion and a bit of pressing Habe agrees to bring Sevilla down for a brief talk but he insist on being present.

Habe returns with Sevilla being more or less supported by two tiefling orderlies. It is immediately obvious to the group that not only is Sevilla infected with ghoul fever but also close to death. He is mumbling something incoherent “…razors…so sharp…so much blood…the skinsaw man is working….” Upon seeing Gus however his demeanor changes. Suddenly he speaks clearly, interspersed with a bit of maniacal laughter.

“He said…he said you would visit me. His Lordship. The one that unmade me said so. He has a place for you. A precious place. I’m so jealous. He has a message for you. He made me remember it. I hope I haven’t forgotten. The master wouldn’t approve if I forgot. Let me see… let… me… see…He said you should come to the Misgivings soon, to meet the Pack, for they have something wonderful to show you.”

There was only a few more moments to try to make sense of this odd message because Sevilla slumped as if exhausted but screamed in agony, ripped apart his straitjacket and attempted to attack Gus. The group, with no choice defended themselves resulting in the death of Sevilla. In an odd reaction, Habe swore he had no idea the man would react like this and begged you not to mention this to anyone lest his reputation be ruined (which in a turn of diplomacy you convinced him you would not and he relaxed visibly promising to lay Sevilla to rest appropriately.) When asked Habe also informed that he did not know anything about the ramblings and that Sevilla had no oustide visitor during his brief stay here.

Then you set out to return to Sandpoint with the afternoon drawing to an end…

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Three Weeks in Sandpoint
Sunday, 15 Rova 4707 to Sunday, 6 Lamashan 4707

After three days, not much has changed in Sandpoint. Sheriff Hemlock is still on his trip to Magnimar to get more troops due to the increase in goblin activity, Shalelu is still leading the watch (and delivers her heartiest congratulations on your clearing out Thistletop), and Mayor Deverin has begun organizing the building of watchtowers at some key points around the outer perimeter.

The group finds that Brodert Quink had spent most of his time in the catacombs and yesterday noon he had left for Magnimar. His friend Ilsoari (headmaster of the Turandarok Academy) says that he was quite keen to do some research there into what he’d found so far.

Ameiko Kaijitsu is having a rough time. You deliver the news of the death of her brother which she takes as stoically as she did her father’s death (but you see it affects her in her eyes.) As she has inherited both the family manor and the Glassworks she’s quite busy trying to get things back in order all the while running the Rusty Dragon. Valadon makes a decision to stay in Sandpoint a while and help her out. He is also curious about this scimitar that was found in Thistletop. It’s old to be sure and seems to “come alive” in his hand as he describes it. He’d like to study it closely.

On 21 Rova Hemlock returns. He has only 10 troops in tow and they seem young at that. It seems that the Magnimar government didn’t think expending more that than was a worthy idea which has left Belor Hemlock in a bit of a foul mood. Because the troops are so green, Hemlock offers Darious a job as their commander which Darius readily accepts.

Hemlock, Deverin, and Father Zantus as well as the town folk are all extremely grateful for the job you’ve done thwarting the future goblin attack on Sandpoint. The news regarding Nualia and the real reasons for the Cathedral fire during the Late Unpleasantness is troublesome to the town to say the least but after the initial shock, most hope that Sandpoint has turned the corner and can finally put that sad history to rest.

On 23 Rova Quink returned. He was most interested to hear about your adventure and was particularly fascinated by the newly found ruins under Thistletop. So interested in fact that he organized an expidition and asked Drazz if he would like to come along. Drazz agreed and the next day they set out to take a look at the new set of ruins under Thistletop. In addition, he was quite interested in the medallion with the star on it and when he found out you were selling it he purchased it on the spot.

Mayor Deverin and Sheriff Hemlock came to the group one day to discuss a matter relating to the town. In addition to Shalelu, there are a few other travelers in the hinterlands that help Sandpoint from time to time. They have decided to create a special group in the town Watch that they will call the Sandpoint Sentinals. The new group will be deputized into the watch and swear an oath (on Oathday, 23 Rova 4707) assist Sandpoint in a time of need and in return Sandpoint considers them citizens. In addition, they are encouraged to make their home here. If they choose not to live in Sandpoint (as Shalelu chooses) then on the occasions that they pass through Sandpoint, they are welcome and housing and meals are covered by the town. The members of the group are issued badge representing the Sentinels (a steel round embossed with a stylied lighthouse from which a ray of light is cast.)

Ulfin chooses to spend a fair amount of time with (proprieter of The Feathered Serpent) discussing all things extraplanar in hopes that he will be better prepared when he ultimately faces his destiny to avenge his people.

To be continued…

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Return from Thistletop
Starday, 14 Rova 4707

Searching the last room in the complex the group found another status of the glaive man, six sarcophagi, and a secret door but were set upon by three shadows. The fight was tough since physical attacks were occasionally useless and things got a little dicey for Drazz when a shadow dropped cut his strength in half but group came out on top in the end.

The secret door led to a room that looked to be some sort of treasury but over the course of time had collapsed and was now flooded. The group fought the rooms only denizen, an enormous hermit crab that had taken up residence in a large (giant sized) helmet of gold and bronze. The group fought well with Ulfin taking the brunt of the attacks (and even being grabbed) and ultimately Ulfin was able to deliver the telling blow skewering the beast.

After a night’s rest, the group carried it’s spoils back to Sandpoint.

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Ruins under Thistleop
Fireday, 13 Rova 4707

Leaving Valadon and Darius to guard upstairs so there were no surprises, the group went down the stairs to find a doorway leading into an open room. The entrance to the room was offset from the bottom of the stairs by about a foot suggesting that the doorway was here prior to the stairs being built. Two additional points of interest were that the floor of this level seemed a little slanted from the west to the east and the door that once closed off the doorway seems to have been battered down by force. The room was lit by lanterns.

Inside the room, the soot that crawled across the floor, ceilings and walls along with the destroyed statues in the a few alcoves hinted at some calamity that happened but lost in time. The dust and rubble that coated the floor shows obvious signs of people or creatures passing here. The hallway leading out of the room ominously had a polished five foot square patch. The group discovered a trap and was able to disabled it without finding out quite what the trap did.

In the first room encountered Nualia and Tsuto were found arguing and surprised when the group burst in. They engaged in battle and held their ground as the group was beset by a pair of hounds like those from the temple. The fight taxed the groups resources, but in the end they held out and defeated the foul group.

Stuff: Nualia – +1 breastplate, +1 bastard sword, mwk composite longbow with 20 arrows, silver medallion with a seven pointed star, gold holy symbol, 7 pp 5 gp, journal and notes. Tsuto – potion CLW, composite shortbow with 20 arrows. ring prot +1, mwk theives tools, mwk flute, pair of silver earrings (25gp), 6 pouches of gold dust (50 gp each), 8 pouches of silver dust (5 gp each), 10 pp

Venturing beyond further into the ruins, the group found a portal whose facade was illusioned into a pile of gold coins. Finally discovering the mechanism for opening the portal the way led to a group of three rooms that did not seem to have been visited in a very, very long time. The first room contained some sort of image of a man which kept repeating a partial message over and over: “…is upon us, but I command you remain. Witness my power, how Alaznist’s petty wrath is but a flash compared to my strength. Take my final work to your graves, and let its memory be the last thing you…”. The second room had three low tables covered with tools, saws, long bladed knives and other tools for which you cannot fathom their purpose. You also find what you believe to be a key (which ultimately opens room number three.) The last room held a foul beast which you do not recognize, but once you realize it is laying in wait you attack and defeat the beast only to see it fade away presumably back to whatever infernal place it came from.

Stuff – mwk tools and implements (100gp), key, 60 eternal candles (25 gp each), silver coffer (100 gp) with a ring of force shield (generates a shield in the shape of a seven pointed star.)

There is currently only one door (which feature two skeletons reaching out to clutch a skull between then) left unexplored.

To be continued…

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