Mithros

Session 5

After Yin agrees to take on the goblin contract from the Ospreys, Evie informs them that they should talk to the Aegis.

“The Aegis are the ones who put out the contract. They’ll have more information for you.”

The group departs.

Cael turns to the group, “We should just head straight to the Aegis headquarters.” Using his extensive knowledge of city guards, he leads the way.

“We’ll have to head to Lodraer’s Wall. Their headquarters is there.”

Dexter and Yin follow him for about ten minutes, towards the center of the town.

They notice a less formal group of guards near the front gate.

Cael points out the headquarters building and the group enters.

Inside is a small, round room. There are a couple of people at desks. In the center is a tall, human male with black hair, closely shaved, and a clean cut beard. He is in full Aegis armor.

Cael approaches. “Hello, we’re here about the goblin job you posted to the Ospreys.”

The man thinks for a moment. “Oh yeah, we did do that.”

“You did the job already?” Dexter asks, confused.

“No. We posted the job. Ospreys…”

“Well,” Dexter says, “we’re here to take care of the job you couldn’t handle, then.”

“It’s not that we can’t handle it, we just don’t have the time or men to deal with goblins right now. If you’re taking on the contract you’ll want to talk to Vic. He’s by the stables. He’s our best man.” The man smirks when he says “best man.”

The group exit the building.

“Alright, so we have to find Vic. He says he’s their best man so that sounds promising.” Dexter says.

“No,” Cael responds, “you don’t send your best man to the stables.”

Yin speaks up. “Yeah, I don’t think Vic is their best man. But we should go talk to him.”

“Well that’s just confusing.” Dexter says.

The group then make their way to the stables.


Meanwhile:
Marley is standing at the top of the city. An attendant is with her but she is obviously bored.

She has an itch for adventure but doesn’t know how to scratch it. She decides to go out and explore the city.

It’s busier than the night before. There appear to be a lot more commoners coming and going. People all seem to be headed to the dais and lining up.

She looks up and sees the Aegis lining the city walls.

Marley decides to head to the Promenade since that is the last time she saw the party. As she approaches she notices there are way more shops open. Some look like pop-up shops, with awnings raised.

She then noticed a few nobles that were in the Royal Court with her. They all appear to be shopping with guards. One of the guards waves to her. She nods and walks over.

“Lady Marley, what are you doing here without an escort?” he asks her.

She replies, “I didn’t know I needed one.”

“You don’t need one but do be careful.”

“Well, I had one escort but he’s disappeared.”

“Disappeared? Well, if you want we can go get you one so you can safely explore the city.”

“Sure,” she says reluctantly, “if it’s no trouble.”

“Not at all. We’ll get you one, now.”

He begins to lead her to a guard tower when she notices Yin, Cael, and Dexter.

She approaches them. “Hey! There you are.”

“Lady Marley.” Dexter greets her. He looks terrible compared to how she last saw him. His eyes are bloodshot and he has bags under them.

“What are you out and about doing today?” Yin asks her.

“Well, I’m looking for something to do. Some adventure. I’ve grown bored. Thane disappeared on me and this guard was going to escort me around.” She turns to the guard. “What was your name?”

The guard replies, “Jansen, m’lady. I was actually going to get you an escort.”

“We’ve taken on a goblin contract if you’d like to join us.” Yin says.

“Are you done everything you had to do in town?” Dexter asks.

“Yes, I’ve taken care of my noble obligations. A goblin adventure sounds fun.”

“Well if you’ll be going with them, miss, do you need me to get you an escort?” the guard asks.

“No, I’ll be ok with them.” Marley replies.

Jansen departs and heads back to the other nobles he was with, earlier.

“I’ve got to get away from these nobles. There’s a count I knew when I was younger, Count Elric. He has a huge crush on me and I’m afraid he won’t leave me alone. The feeling isn’t mutual so I’d like to get away. Plus, I’m itching for some sort of adventure.” Marley tells the group.

“Well, we took on this contract from the Ospreys. I’m sure they wouldn’t mind if you came along and helped.” Yin says.

“Is there anything in the rules stating it can only be tackled by official Ospreys?” Dexter asks.

Cael pulls out the rules given to them when they signed up. It was one page and a short list, but there did not appear to be any restrictions on members completing the tasks.

Dexter yawns.

“Well we have to head to the stables so you can come along with us.” Yin said.

The group makes their way to the stables. Dexter begins to nod off while walking and then quickly snaps awake. “Hm? Sleep?” he says, to nobody.

They come to the stables, enter the building, and approach a guard inside.

“We’re looking for Vic.” Cael says.

“Vic?” the man asks, seemingly confused. “Why do you need to see Vic?”

“We’re here about the goblin contract.”

“Oh,” the guard says with a disgusted tone. “You must be Ospreys.”

Dexter doesn’t pick up on social cues very well, but he heard the insult in the man’s voice.

“Yes, sir, we are. And we are here to handle the task that the Aegis couldn’t.” Dexter snaps.

“Look, it’s not that we can’t handle it. We have better things to do than chase down goblins who are robbing people on the road. If you want to talk to Vic, he’s in the back. Just keep walking until it smells like shit. He’s there, you can’t miss him.”

The four of them make their way to the back of the stables. Sure enough, the stench of shit hits their nostrils like a dwarven hammer to the face. The horrible smell is enough to wake Dexter up a bit. Then, through watered eyes, they see a human male who looks to be in his 50s. He has solid white hair.

“Vic?” Cael says.

“Yes. I’m Vic. How can I help you?” he replies.

“Well, we’re here about the goblin contract posted to the Ospreys.”

“Yeah, the one that the Aegis can’t handle.” Dexter adds.

“Good. They sent somebody. I was afraid that was going to go untouched.” Vic says.

“Yeah. We’re here. How did you get this wonderful post?” Cael says, full of sarcasm.

“All rookies are assigned here.”

“You look a little seasoned to be a rookie. A little long in the tooth.”

“Well I joined the Aegis only recently and was assigned here. I’m glad they finally sent someone about the goblins.”

“The goblins that the Aegis can’t handle.” Dexter adds, again.

“It’s not that they can’t handle them. They just don’t want to. The goblins are only robbing people, not killing anybody. Truth be told there’s only been one injury, and it was a boy who was trying to protect his mother.” Vic tells the group.

“Is he ok?” Yin asks.

“Yeah, he’s at the hospital now, but he’ll be fine. Even with that incident, the Aegis don’t care.”

“About the people?! I could be wrong but I thought the guards were supposed to guard and keep the people of the town safe.” Dexter snaps.

“Look, I agree with you. I’d like to be out there helping but they’ve got me here shoveling shit. Now that you’re here, though, maybe we can do something about the robberies.”

“Alright, well where are the robberies taking place? Are they in a specific area?” Cael asks.

“Yes, near the Sevenswood. All of the stories are the same. They attack merchants and smaller groups. They demand a toll and then attack when the people don’t pay up. Are you familiar with the Sevenswood?”

Yin, Marley, Dexter, and Cael all look at each other. They then turn back to Vic.

“Nope,” they all say at once.

“Well it is down the Medallia High Road, just a few hours south of town. You’ll notice the trees get a lot taller and the woods get thicker as you approach. There’s a waystone in the middle of the highway. Look, if you’re going to take up this task then I do have a favor to ask.”

“What is that?” Dexter asks. He yawns again.

“Please keep an eye out for any treasures or valuables.”

“Is there a list of items that have been taken?” Yin asks.

“Yes. I have taken statements from every person that has been attacked and I have a list. If you find anything we can get the items returned to their rightful owners.”

“Alright, then we’ll keep an eye out for anything.”

“Excellent.”

The group begins discussions on what to do next.

Vic pulls Dexter aside.

“I have another favor to ask. There’s a necklace that belonged to the mother of the boy who was injured. It would mean a lot to her. It seemed very personal and she would greatly appreciate it.” Vic whispers to him.

“Sure,” Dexter says. “I’ll keep an eye out for any necklaces as well as the other treasures.”

“Great! She will be excited to have it returned. Thank you.”

Dexter returns to the group.

“Dexter,” Yin says, “you look terrible.”

“What?!” Dexter brushes himself off and dusts his hat. “I think I look just fine.”

“No, you look tired. What say you get some sleep before we head off to the goblins?”

“I’m not tired, you’re tired.”

Then Cael speaks up. “If we sleep and then head out in the morning I should be able to pick up my armor from the blacksmith. He said it would be ready tomorrow. He didn’t say what time, but if we wait I can swing by and see if it is done.”

“You know what? Sleep does sound great.” Dexter says.

The group all agree to head back to the Magic Box to rent some rooms.

Inside the Magic Box they see a fat woman behind the counter.

“Four rooms, please.” Dexter asks her.

“That’ll be one gold.” she says.

“I’ll pay this time,” Cael says as he hands her a gold piece. She gives him four keys.

The four of them head upstairs to their respective rooms.

Dexter enters his room and falls face first onto his bed. The brim of his hat hits the pillow and pops right off of his head as he immediately falls asleep.

Cael, Marley, and Yin all meditate as Dexter’s snores echo in the walls.


In the morning, the group heads downstairs. Dexter is very well rested and feels like a new man.

The inn has set up a small breakfast for the guests. There’s an assortment of toast, biscuits, juices, etc.

Dexter raids the food and tries to grab one of everything.

Cael simply grabs two pieces of toast.

After breakfast the group decide to accompany Cael to the blacksmith to check on his armor.

“Hello.” Cael says as he enters the store.

“Ah! How are you?” the blacksmith asks.

“Good. I’m here to see if my studded leather armor is done.”

“Of course! I told you it would be today. Go talk to the clerk at the counter and he’ll take care of you.”

Cael walks up to the counter in the shop. “Excuse me, I’m here to pick up some armor I ordered.”

“Ah yes,” the clerk says. “Studded leather, yes? I believe the agreement was 45 gold total. You paid 25 up front so that will be another 20 gold.” He smiles and holds out his hand.

Cael hands over the 20 gold pieces. The clerk motions him to a mannequin in studded leather armor. “Here you are, sir.”

Without hesitate he begins taking his current armor off as the clerk starts removing the armor from the mannequin.

“Would you like me to help you don this armor?” the clerk asks him.

“Sure,” he says, without stopping.

The clerk helps Cael into his new armor. “Ah, it looks great.”

“Thank you.” Cael says.

The four of them decide to finally head south down the high road.

“What is our plan, exactly?” Dexter asks as they’re walking. “Do we want to pretend to be merchants or just go on a goblin hunt?”

“We’ll figure something out.” Cael says.

The continue south down the road out of town. They notice more groups of people. The groups are larger, as well. Any small groups seem to be well armed and ready for combat.

They begin to see birds, pheasants, falcons, and then mountains. They continue walking until they crest a small hill. In the distance they see woods in every direction.

Cael, Yin, and Marley all notice the waypoint that Vic mentioned. Yin begins playing his flute. Dexter smiles and uses Minor Illusion to create the sound of drum beats.

They start to notice less and less travelers as they get closer to the woods. They are finally able to make out the waystone. it is roughly 20 feet tall and takes up most of the road, which seems to split around it.

Yin notices some markings on the stone. He inspects them but is unable to discern what they are. They look like hieroglyphics and definitely not rune-like.

Marley’s eyes light up. “I recognize this. It’s druidic.”

“Ah, is this a common thing to do among druids? Vandalize rocks?” Dexter asks.

“Well, it’s not really vandalizing but yes, it is common. Here, I’ll read it.”

Marley then reads the script out loud:
Strong is the tree that grows roots among the rocks and in defiance of the storm.

“Interesting. I wonder what it means.” Yin says.

Marley then writes, “Marley was here” in druidic. Suddenly they hear some sounds coming from the trees to the left.

“Sounds squirrel-like,” Marley says. She then casts Speak With Beasts and begins shouting in squirrel.

squeak squeak squeak

To Yin, Dexter, and Cael’s surprise, a squirrel comes running from the trees.

Marley and the squirrel begin a conversation. Yin, Cael, and Dexter cannot understand them but they just stand there, fascinated.

The squirrel runs up to Marley. “Yes?”

“Have you seen any goblins around here?” Marley asks.

“Depends. Do you have any food?”

“Yeah.”

“Then yeah, I have.”

Marley pulls out some rations and gives it to the squirrel.

The squirrel sits upright and takes the rations. “I like you!”

The squirrel then gives Marley directions to where it saw a goblin.

“Go here,” it points east, “and then down there,” it changed directions, “really far.”

“Thank you! What is your name?”

“Oh, I don’t have a name. My mom calls me ‘Hey you’.”

“Alright. Heyu it is. Thanks, Heyu!”

The squirrel takes the food and runs back into the trees. Marley turns to Dexter, Cael, and Yin, who are all just staring in confused amazement.

“What was that?” Dexter asks.

“Oh, I was getting information from the squirrel.” Marley responds.

“Well that was awesome.” Yin says.

Marley relays the information given to her by the squirrel, and the group make their way east. There’s no path so they slowly push through brush and shrubs.

After about 5 minutes of travel Yin spots some foot prints. He points them out to the rest of the group. They are small and humanoid. The group begins following the footprints. More and more tracks appear, and it turns into a small path.

They follow the trail and the hear rusting in the trees. Yin looks in the direction of the sound and locks eyes with a goblin hiding in a blind. The goblin’s eyes grow wide and it begins to run.

Cael shouts, in goblin, “Stop!” but the goblin keeps running.

Yin, Cael, Dexter, and Marley all begin chasing it.

As they are running behind it, Yin notices that the goblin steps on odd ground. When he steps on it, the ground seems to bounce a bit. Yin stops everybody and points it out.

Dexter conjures a 10 pound rock and tosses is on the trap. The ground bounces but nothing happens. The group slowly make their way around the trap.

Yin spots some fresh tracks on the ground. It appears the goblin is currently following the path. As they follow the tracks further Yin sees the goblin split from the path and run to the right.

The group decides to follow the main path where more of the foot traffic is. The path eventually leads to a clearing.

Up ahead, in the clearing, they see a single goblin.

The goblin turns and spots them. “Fuck,” it says in common. It then dives down and disappears into the ground.

“How the hell did it do that?” Dexter asks.

Yin turns to Marley, “Can’t you turn into animals? Why don’t you turn into a mouse or something and scout ahead?”

Cael says, “You did want adventure.”

“Alright,” she agrees. Marley then casts Beast Shape on herself. She shrinks down to a mouse and takes off running towards the clearing where the goblin disappeared.

As she gets close she sees a small covered section where the goblin vanished. It appears it crawled under here. She then notices a cave entrance that opens up into stonework.

There are two paths ahead of her but no sign of the goblin. Up ahead, though, she does see a faint light. She makes her way, in mouse form, towards the light down the straight path. She hears a noise up ahead and then makes a left when the path splits again.

Here she sees a room that is well lit. Three goblins are standing around a larger goblinoid creature. They’re all speaking goblin so she cannot understand what they are saying but it appears the larger one is giving orders or is in charge. Unfortunately it’s all goblin chatter to her.

The larger one starts yelling at the others. It is definitely in charge. It shouts what sounds like an order and then starts to walk towards her. She holds her breath as it walks out of the room, right by the inconspicuous mouse on the ground, and down the path directly behind her. It either didn’t see her or did not care.


Marley has been gone for about five minutes when Dexter, Cael, and Yin begin to worry. They slowly move forward and see the covered cave entrance.

As they are looking at it, Marley runs back out in mouse form. She begins to grow in size as her big round ears begin to shift to a point and she takes on her normal form.

Marley tells the group everything she saw in the cave and they decide to try and stealthily sneak their way in.

“We did come to find goblins. Sounds like we found some.” Cael says.

The group slowly makes their way into the cave and head to the room Marley described. As they approach the room she notices that the door is shut, this time.

Odd, she thought to herself. She reaches out to the door knob and tries to turn it but it is locked.

Marley slowly gets down to one knee and decides to look through the keyhole to see if she can see what is going on in the room.

Through the keyhole she sees a goblin charging towards the door. Her eye widens and the door bursts open as the charging goblin kicks it. She is hit and knocked prone.

The goblin is left standing in the doorway.

Combat

  • Yin acrobatically tumbles right by the goblin and enters the room. He sees two more goblins in the room. He then attacks Goblin 1 with a two handed quarter staff strike.
    • He spins his staff and strikes the goblin’s head. The goblin immediately collapses.
  • Goblin 2 and Goblin 3 move up to Yin.
    • Goblin 2 shouts, “Intruders!” in goblin.
    • Cael shouts, “No we’re not!” in goblin.
    • Both goblins strike with their scimitars but Yin is able to deflect both attacks with his staff.
  • Cael fires at Goblin 2.
    • He draws his arrow and quickly fires at the goblin, missing to the right.
  • Dexter moves and helps Marley up.
    • “Madame,” he says as he helps her stand up.
  • Marley fires her crossbow at Goblin 2.
    • Due to the tight quarters she is unable to get a good aim and hits the wall behind the goblin.
    • She then steps back.
  • Yin turns to Goblin 3 and attacks with a two handed quarterstaff strike.
    • The staff connects to the side of the goblin so he uses a flurry of blows to continue the assault.
      • After hitting with the staff he swings his palm, which the goblin sidesteps. Unfortunately for the goblin, it sidestepped right into Yin’s knee as he brought it forward. The goblin drops to the ground.
  • The group hear something that sounds like shifting stones echoing in the cave.
  • Goblin 2 attacks Yin.
    • It swings its scimitar and slices right into his thigh.
  • Cael fires another arrow at Goblin 2.
    • This time the arrow pierces through the goblin’s face as it is pinned to the wall behind it.
  • Yin begins cutting off the goblin’s ears in order to bring back proof to the Ospreys.

Dexter exits the room and slowly makes his way a little further down the hallway. He notices a section of the wall that is clean and contains no dust. It seems very out of place.

“Yin, come take a look at this,” he ushers Yin over.

“Hm. it looks like a passage or doorway of some sort. I bet that is the sound we heard.” Yin says.

“There’s gotta be a switch somewhere…” Dexter says. They both make their way back to the room.

Yin immediately grabs both torches and the wall and pulls on them but nothing happens. They are just torches.

They decide to head down the path that is opposite of the doorway. It is very dark in the hallway. Dexter conjures a small stick. The stick has a faint glow and gives off light in five feet each direction. It’s just enough light for him not to trip over his own two feet but he is happy with himself.

They continue moving, with Yin in the lead.

click

Yin’s foot steps down on a trap. His eyes widen as he jumps backwards. Suddenly the wall opens and a giant rock bashes into the opposite wall. Yin counts his blessings and is thankful he isn’t a mushy red paste on the wall.

They turn another corner and see a room at the end of the hallway. Inside is the large goblin Marley described. In the light they can see he has a brown/reddish skin color; almost like the color of dried blood.

The large goblin creature make a gesture and two more larger goblins appear.

Cael shouts out to them in goblin, “We don’t want to kill all of you!”

The main goblin just laughs as it echoes off of the rocky walls.

Combat

  • Cael hears footsteps rushing up from behind. He quickly pulls out the hunter’s trap he’s been carrying and sets it on the ground.
  • Yin moves to Big Goblin 2 and attacks with a two handed quarterstaff strike.
    • The attack misses.
    • Yin follows up with an unarmed strike.
      • He brings his palm forward and strikes the big goblin in the chest.
  • Marley moves up to the third big goblin, which the group now recognizes as a Bugbear. She attacks with her dagger.
    • She stabs forward but misses the strike.
    • She then turns into a tiger.
  • Cael take aim at Big Goblin 1 and fires an arrow.
    • The arrow flies over Marley’s tiger form and strikes the goblin right in the neck.
      • The goblin let’s out a howl.
  • Big Goblin 2 and Bugbear 1 attack Yin and Marley.
    • Yin is struck by the Big Goblin 2.
    • Bugbear 1 misses Marley as she dodges with her cat reflexes.
  • Dexter shouts and incantation and summons a Flaming Sphere.
    • “Never step to a wizard, a lesson you’ll soon learn. Now behold my fire and burn burn BURN!!”
    • A large, 5 foot sphere of fire is conjured behind Big Goblin 1, Bugbear 1, and Big Goblin 2. It illuminates the room.
    • Dexter then moves the ball of fire and slams it into Big Goblin 1, burning him.
  • Goblin 4 and Goblin 5 approach from behind.
    • They turn the corner and come into view, just as Goblin 4 steps on the hunter’s trap.
      • It jumps back and out of the jaws as the trap slams shut, narrowly avoiding the trap.
  • Big Goblin 1 attacks Marley.
    • It swings its sword and strikes the tiger in the back.
    • Big Goblin 1 is then burned by the flaming sphere at its back.
  • Yin attacks Big Goblin 2.
    • He swings his staff with both hands and hits it right in the head.
      • The goblin falls to the ground as teeth fly out from the force of the blow.
    • Yin then focuses his Ki and attacks Big Goblin 1.
      • He swings and hits the goblin’s legs.
        • He tries to sweep and knock the goblin prone but the goblin’s legs are surprisingly strong so he stays standing.
  • Marley attacks Big Goblin 1.
    • She bites at the goblin but misses.
    • She then swipes with her claws, but the goblin’s armor absorb the attack.
  • Cael attacks Big Goblin 4.
    • He pulls out his Unbreakable Arrow, enchants it with Grasping Arrow, and strikes the goblin in the chest.
      • Barbed vines sprout out and begin raking the goblin’s skin as blood pours down his body.
  • Bugbear 1 attacks Marley.
    • Marley is able to dodge out of the way and avoid the attack.
  • Big Goblin 6 appears as it dashes around the corner and attacks Cael.
    • It runs by Big Goblin 4 and 5 and swings at Cael, missing.
  • Dexter attacks Bugbear 1.
    • He conjures an Ice Knife and sends it flying to the bugbear.
      • The knife pierces the bugbear’s eye, killing it.
        • The knife then explodes, sending shards out in each direction. However, nobody is in range so nobody is struck.
    • He then slams the Flaming Sphere into Big Goblin 1, searing his skin with the fire.
  • Big Goblin 5 attacks Cael.
    • It pulls out a javelin and throws it at Cael, who ducks.
      • The tip hits the wall and breaks.
      • Cael shouts, in goblin, “Good try!”
      • It shouts, in goblin, “Kill this one!” and then points to Cael.
  • Big Goblin 1 attacks Yin.
    • The first attack is dodged by Yin.
    • The second attack catches him off guard and connects.
      • Yin drops unconscious.
    • Big Goblin 1 is hurt, again, by the Flaming Sphere as the heat burns him.
  • Yin rolls a 1 and failed two death saving throws: Failures – 2, Successes – 0
  • Marley attacks Big Goblin 1.
    • She lashes out with her teeth and bites down on the goblin’s throat, tearing it away from his body. The life leaves his eyes as he falls to the ground, blood pouring from the hole where his neck used to be.
    • She then turns and tries to swipe her claws at Bugbear 1 but misses.
  • Cael moves up and then Fey Steps to Yin.
    • He attempts to stabilize him but is unable to.
  • Bugbear 1 attacks Marley.
    • It swings its sword but Marley is able move so that it is a glancing blow.
    • Bugbear 1’s back is then burned by the heat from the Flaming Sphere.
      • The bugbear screams in pain.
  • Dexter attacks Bugbear 1.
    • He slams the Flaming Sphere into the bugbear, who is overcome by the heat. It screams again as it is turned to a pile of ash.
    • Dexter moves into the room and uses his healer’s kit to stabilize Yin.
  • Big Goblin 5 attacks Marley.
    • It throws a javelin at the tiger, piercing her hind quarters.
    • He then begins running away.
  • Big Goblin 4 moves up and attacks Marley.
    • It misses.
  • Marley attacks Big Goblin 4.
    • She bites him and can hear bones breaking in her jaw.
    • She then lashes out with her claws, rends his belly, and his guts spill out onto the cave floor.
  • Cael begins running after Big Goblin 5.
  • Dexter pulls out a Potion of Healing from Yin’s pack.
  • Big Goblin 5 runs farther away, disappearing around the corners and maze of the cave.

Dexter pours the healing potion into Yin’s mouth as he wakes up.

Cael grabs his magic arrow.

The group behind inspecting the room looking for any of the missing treasure. Dexter finds a wand with spiderweb designs etched into it. He also finds a pouch containing 371 pieces of gold.

“There’s quite a bit of gold here!” Dexter says.

“Yeah, I’m sure it all belongs to the people of the town.” Cael says.

“There’s still some more places we haven’t searched in this cave.” Yin says.

Yin drinks his last Potion of Healing to try and recover from the damage he took in the last fight.

The group make their way back towards the entrance in order to check out the other hallway they have not taken. Yin moves forward and they see another room with a door.

“I’ll check this one out,” Yin says as he slowly moves forward.

click

Yin jumps back as a panel on the wall opens up and tiny needles begin to fire into the other side of the hallway.

Yin realizes he was holding his breath so he exhales and then moves forward, now looking for traps.

He approaches the door and tries the knob. It won’t turn.

“It’s locked,” he tells the group.

“I wonder if it is flammable,” Dexter thinks to himself out loud.

“Well, there’s one way to find out,” Cael says. He then steps back and launches a Firebolt at the door.

Fwoosh!

The mote of fire slams into the door, causing visible damage, but it did not ignite it. It did, however, cause gaps in the wood between each plank.

“Ah!” Dexter exclaims as he steps forward and peaks through the crack.

He mutters and incantation as a silvery mist begins to surround his body. Then…

BAMF!

…his body disappeared and reappeared on the other side of the door. He then unlocks the door so the rest of the group can enter the room.

They begin looking around for more of the townsfolk’s treasures. There are items lining the floor of the room along the wall. They are able to loot:

  • 40 arrows
  • 20 crossbow bolts
  • some shiny armor
  • a shield
  • two books
  • and a backpack

Cael takes the 40 arrows and places them in his pack.

Marley looks at the bolts and begins growling in tiger form at the group.

“We’re not sure what you’re saying, Marley. We don’t speak tiger.” Yin says to her.

Dexter grabs the books and inspects them. One is a diary/journal written in common. The other seems to be a travel guide on the continent of Ozymandia. He places them in the bag of holding. Dexter grabs the crossbow bolts and places them in the Bag of Holding as well.

Dexter then inspects the armor and shield. They both appear to be magical but he cannot determine what sort of magic enchantment they have. He places them in the Bag of Holding with the rest of the treasures.

The backpack turned out to be a Dungeoneer’s Pack, which contained:

  • a crowbar
  • a hammer
  • 10 pitons
  • 10 torches
  • a tinderbox
  • 10 days of rations
  • a waterskin
  • and 50 feet of hempen rope

He also finds another pouch containing 422 gold pieces. He places this all in the Bag of Holding.

As the group is looting and inspecting the room, Dexter notices there is another room he can see. On the ground is a dead goblin, with a necklace around its neck. He is able to notice that the pendant is half of the symbol that he has been chasing after.

“Ah!” he exclaims and runs straight over to the body.

“What are you doing?” Yin shouts as he sees Dexter sprint to the next room.

“A necklace! I think I found it!” Dexter says. He’s clearly only paying attention to the necklace.

“Ok but you can’t just run into rooms without looking. There could have been a trap or more enemies.” Yin says, baffled by his action.

“Mhmm,” Dexter says. However, he does not look up from the necklace.

He then places the necklace in his pack. “Alright. Shall we continue down the hallway?”

“Sure,” Yin says.

Marley and Cael remain in the room.

Eventually the hallway leads back to the entrance. Each of the party members regroup near the cave’s entrance.

“Well, it seems there is only one way out. I think we’re done here.” Dexter says.

“I still want to see what that sound was and what that wall was.” Yin says.

“Oh yeah! I forgot about that! That is definitely worth checking out.” Dexter agrees.

The rest of the group agree to try and look for a switch of some sort as they begin checking every suspicious looking thing in the cave.

Eventually Yin finds a torch that moves when he pulls on it. The group then hears the same stone sounds they heard earlier, echoing in the halls. They run to the suspicious wall they found before.

This time, however, the hallway is not a dead end. It leads to a small, dark room. Yin looks inside to see if he can find anything with his darkvision.

“It just looks like a small room but there is writing on the wall. I can’t really tell what language it is, though. The script looks elvish but it’s as if it is written in gibberish or something. It doesn’t really make any sense.”

The group move into the room and inspect the writing.

“Hm, I know that slyvan uses an elvish script but I do not speak or understand it,” he says to the group. “If we have the time I can do a ritual casting of Comprehend Languages and possibly read what it says.”

“Sure.” Yin says. The rest of the group agree.

Dexter begins casting Comprehend Languages. In his mind the letters begin to glow and then arrange themselves to make sense.

He reads it out loud:

Silently he stalks, running as I run;
Creeping as I creep.
Dressed in all black, he disappears in the dark,
Only to return in the sun.

Cael excitedly blurts out, “Shadow!”

The group then ponder how to answer the riddle using “shadow”. They try saying it to the wall but nothing happens.

Dexter looks up, scratching his head, and sees a crudely drawn symbol of the sun, lit by the bonfire, on the ceiling of the room.

“Up there. Look.” He points it out to the group. “Maybe if we cast a shadow on the sun?”

“It’s worth a try.” Yin says.

“Alright. Here goes nothing.” Dexter places his hands over the bonfire and begins casting shadow puppets on the drawing of the sun. He makes a dog and begins moving it around. “Bark bark bark.”

They then start to hear shifting stones as his hands are moving.

“Stop moving your hands! Just hold them there.” Cael says.

Dexter stops moving them and holds the shadow on the sun drawing. Suddenly the wall with the writing on it disappears.

Dexter pulls his hands back and the wall reappears.

“Whoa! You all saw that, right?” he says to the group.

“Yeah, you saw that chest, right?” Marley says.

“Chest?” the group responds, all at once.

“Yeah, I saw a chest on the other side of the wall.”

“Hm, we need a way to cast a continuous shadow on this sun so we can check out that room.” Dexter says.

“Quick, give me that shield. I can try and set up my quarterstaff in the bonfire with the shield on top so it casts a shadow.” Dexter pulls the shield out of the Bag of Holding and hands it to Yin.

Yin starts to attach the shield to his staff. He then looks into the fire, back to his staff, and then at Dexter. “You know what…my staff isn’t fireproof. I don’t think I want to risk burning it.”

He then hands the shield back to Dexter, who places it back in the Bag of Holding.

“Smart. Here, I’ll hold my hand over the fire while you check out that room. How does that sound?” Cael says.

“Sounds like a plan.”

Cael places his hands over the fire and casts a shadow on the sun. The wall disappears again.

Yin, Marley, and Dexter enter the room.

As soon as they break the threshold where the wall is, Yin feels a strange static in the back of his head, but he is able to shake it off.

He looks over at Marley and Dexter, who are now frozen in place.

“Uh, guys?” Yin says to both of them. He then starts snapping his fingers in front of Dexter’s face but he gets no reaction.

Yin tries to push or move them but is unable to. They are frozen in place and going nowhere.

Cael shouts, “What’s going on guys?”

Yin responds. “I’m not sure. They both just froze. I think there was something magical about the wall or a barrier.”

“If I remove the shadow, does that mean the wall will appear and kill them?”

“I’m not sure. I don’t now how any of this works.”

“Well what do you see inside?”

“There’s a chest. It looks normal to me.”

Yin looks around to inspect the chest closer. Above the chest he sees a skeleton carved into the stone. He pokes the chest with his staff.

“Yeah,” Yin shouts, “I don’t think it is trapped. There’s a skeleton above the chest, though!”

“A skeleton?! Yeah that sounds safe.” Cael says.

“Well, it’s carved into the stone. It’s not a real skeleton.”

“Oh, well that is way better.”

“I’m not sure what to do.”

“I could come help you, but it would probably kill Marley and Dexter.”

“No, keep that shadow on the sun.”

“My hands are getting pretty warm,” Cael said as he feigned removing his hands from over the fire. He then laughed to himself.

“I’m just going to go for it.” Yin said as he moved closer to the chest.

He flipped the lid open and then braced himself.

Nothing happened.

“What’s in there?” Cael asked.

Yin looks inside and sees two rings on a pillow, surrounded by gemstones and a vial.

“I see two rings, on a pillow, some gemstones, and a vial of something!”

He gets a closer look at the rings. They don’t look magic and don’t appear to be trapped. He looks back and Dexter and Marley, then snatches the contents of the chest.

As soon as he grabs the items, Dexter and Marley unfreeze.

Dexter shakes his head. For Marley and Dexter, it is as if no time has passed.

“H-how did you get over there so quickly?” Dexter asks Yin, who had appeared to simply teleport to the chest from his perspective.

Yin explains what happened and what he found.

“Well that’s strange.” Dexter says.

They move back to the room with Cael and the bonfire. Cael removes his hands from over the fire and the wall reappears.

“Here, take a look at these rings. They seem normal to me but I don’t know much about magic. Maybe you can get a reading off of them.” Yin hands the two rings over to Dexter.

One ring is gold with a rhombus shape carved into it. The other is a plain silver band. Dexter inspects them.

“They’re definitely magic but I cannot discern the enchantment right now. With that pearl we received from Captain Sainz I may be able to identify them later.” Dexter says. He then places them in the Bag of Holding.

Cael speaks up, “Let me see that vial you found.”

Yin hands it to him. Cael then unplugs the cork, gives it a whiff, and then tastes a small amount. He is able to immediately recognize it as a Potion of Greater Healing.

Yin hands Dexter the gems he found, which seem to be worth approximately 200 gold pieces, and Dexter places them in the Bag of Holding.

“Hey Dexter, let me see one of those rings really quickly. I wanna try something.” Yin says.

“Alright,” Dexter thinks about the golden ring, reaches into the Bag of Holding, and pulls it out.

He gives it to Yin who then places it on his finger. He immediately feels magic emanating.

“Anything?” Dexter asks.

“I feel something but I don’t know what.” Yin answers. He then pulls the ring off and hands it back to Dexter, who places it back in the Bag of Holding.

Marley then comes out of her tiger form. “Can I have those crossbow bolts we found?” she asks.

“Sure,” Dexter pulls them out of the Bag of Holding and hands them to her, who places them in her pack.

The group make their way back to the waystone on the high road.

The road looks more populated than earlier.

It is very peaceful and a weird sight. It is unusual to see so many people out in the wild and not worried.

The group realize it is a little after noon and decide to head back to Exander. They have a three hour trek ahead of them and figure it’s best to begin their trip now.

They chat with a few people along the way. Most people seem to be readying themselves for the coronation. They also notice people seem to walk a little closer to them. They all assume it is because they look like they know how to handle themselves in a fight.

Dexter smiles and puffs his chest out a bit, trying to keep it discreet, but failing terribly.

They finally notice the Sword of Exander in the distance. After a little more traveling they approach the city gates.

“If you guys want, I can rent some rooms at the Magic Box and identify these items. Maybe get a little rest in?” Dexter says.

“Sounds good.” Cael says.

The enter the Magic Box and see the same man that they’ve seen before.

“Hello, sir,” Dexter says. “I’d like to rent four rooms.”

The man smiles, “I like you guys. Return customers. It’s great for business. That’ll be one gold.”

Dexter hands him a gold piece and hands out the keys.

“I’ll join you in your room if you don’t mind, while you identify those items.” Yin says to Dexter.

“Sure, come on up.” Dexter says.

Cael gives them a side-eyed look and then goes up to his room. Marley heads up to hers.

In the room Dexter begins casting Identify on the rings.

The golden ring is a Ring of Protection, making you harder to hit in combat.

The silver ring is a Ring of Invisibility, allowing the user to become invisible at will.

Both items require attunement.

“Here,” Dexter says as he hands the golden ring to Yin. “You seem to be on the frontline quite a bit. This should help you avoid incoming attacks a little better.”

Yin puts the ring on and attunes to it.

Dexter puts on the Ring of Invisibility and attunes to it.

After taking a short rest, the group meet back downstairs.

Cael sees Yin and Dexter walking down the stairs. “Ah, are you two done identifying stuff?”

“Yes. Check it out!” Dexter says, and then he goes invisible.

He then becomes visible again. “Pretty cool, huh?”

“We need to go meet Vic and see about getting that itemized list.” Cael says, unimpressed.

The group head back to the stables. As they approach the back they see Vic talking to a young kid, who looks to be 18 or 19.

“You’re back!” Vic says as the kid leaves.

“Yeah, defeated a bunch of goblins and found some treasures. We’re not sure if it is all of it but we’d like to see that itemized list in order to return what needs to be returned.” Yin says.

“Done already? Well if you want to meet me at a tavern I can grab the itemized list and we can go over it. Are you familiar with the Crowbar?” Vic says.

“We are. We’ll meet you there.” Cael says.

“Excellent.” Vic says as he heads back inside the stables.

The group head back to the Promenade and to the Crowbar.

Inside, they see a bunch of miners all drinking.

They grab a table and a waitress approaches. “What can I get you?”

“I’ll have an ale.” Yin says.

“Four ales it is,” the waitress says and then walks away. She returns moments later with four ales and hands them out.

Soon after, Vic shows up. Unfortunately, it appears that his stench followed him.

He sits at their table and pulls out a list of the items that were stolen.

On the list:

  • the shield
  • the armor
  • 714 gold
  • both books
  • and the necklace

“Ah, it sounds like we found everything.” Dexter says.

“Even the necklace?” Vic asks.

“Yes…but about that. I’d like to deliver the necklace personally.”

“Personally? But why?”

“We fought really hard for the necklace and I’d like to see her face when we deliver it.”

“Fair enough. You deserve some praise for the hard work you put in. We can head there now, if you’d like.”

“That sounds good. Do you want us to give you all of this stuff, now?” Dexter says as he starts opening the Bag of Holding.

“No. Let’s stop by the headquarters and get these items and gold to the Aegis then we can head to Ixinia. She’s the one looking for the necklace.” Vic says.

They head to the Aegis headquarters and enter behind Vic.

“Sir,” Vic says, “this group has stopped the goblins bothering people on the main road and recovered the lost treasures.”

The man in the building looks at them, “This group?”

“Yes. We took care of the goblins that the Aegis couldn’t handle. We’re here to return the items to the Aegis so you can give them back to their owners.” Dexter said, as he puffed his chest out with pride.

“Alright…”

The group hand over the items on the list.

“Alright,” Vic said, “I’ll be sure these items get back to their owners. Now, let’s head back to the Promenade to talk to Ixinia and return her necklace.”

“If I can ask, why do you take such an interest in this necklace and this woman?” Dexter asks.

Vic looks confused. “…what do you mean?”

“You said it would mean a lot to you and it was really personal.”

“I didn’t say that. I said it would mean a lot to her and it was very personal to her! You said all of that other stuff.”

“Oh, well I was very tired. I clearly misheard you.”

They continue to the Promenade and head to a shop.

There, Vic approaches a human female who looks to be in her 40s with greying hair. She is wearing an apron and handing out flyers.

She looks up and see’s Vic. “Vic!” she excitedly shouts. Then she smells him. “Vic….”

“Hello ma’am, Dexter Drake.” Dexter Drake introduces himself and removes his hat. He places it back on his head.

“I believe this belongs to you?” Dexter pulls out the necklace.

“Yes! You found it! Oh, thank you. It means so much to me.”

“Yeah, about that…” Dexter’s sentences begin trailing off as he thinks what to say. “Would you be willing to answer a few questions about the necklace?”

Ixinia looks confused. “What do you mean? Can I have my necklace back?”

“Of…course.” Dexter says as he puts his hand forward. His grip on the necklace is tight and he does not want to give it up. But as she reaches for it he loosens his grip and lets her have it back.

She clutches it to herself.

“It was not easy to retrieve this and it is very important to me that we talk about it if you are free.” Dexter says.

“Well how about we meet at a cafe at 8AM tomorrow morning? I can answer whatever questions you may have. Will that work for you?”

“That would be perfect.” Dexter said. He forces a smile on his face but it is off-putting and creepy. It’s obvious he wasn’t happy to give up the necklace and he’s doing a terrible job at hiding it.

“Well, if you’ll excuse us, we have to return to the Ospreys and let them know the contract has been taken care of. I’ll see you in the morning.” Dexter bows and returns to the group.

They make their way back to the Hunter’s Den. As they approach they notice a lady flipping the sigils.

“Her tusks arouse me,” Cael says, seemingly to nobody.

“You said that out loud,” Dexter tells him.

Cael’s face suddenly gets stern and he just continues walking, not looking at the other group members.

The group enter the main building and cash in the contract. They hand over the bill and are payed 50 gold pieces by Evie. They divide it up amongst themselves.

“So, do you have to be an Osprey to work contracts?” Yin asks.

“Um, what do you mean?” Evie asks.

“Well, Marley here,” Dexter says as he points to Marley, “helped on that last task. Does this make her an Osprey now? Could that have been her try out? How does it work?”

Evie looks at Marley. “Do you want to be an Osprey?”

“It’s got adventure, which is what you said you are looking for!” Dexter assures her.

“I guess,” Marley says.

“We’ll have to talk about it, then. Will you all be staying in the Osprey’s barracks tonight?” Evie asks them.

“How much is that?” Yin says.

“It’s one silver a piece.”

“Well, I already paid 1 gold for four rooms at the Magic Box so I will be staying there tonight.” Dexter says.

“Yeah, since it is already paid for I will as well.” Marley says.

The rest of the group agree.

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