4 Aslala – 5 Aslala of the year 73
Having been showered with bone shards, dozens of undead strewn in the streets, and Akora and Emmerick injured, the party conferred with the guards who thanked them for their assistance. Forgoing returning to the Spectrum Creature, they opted instead to find an abandoned building near the Temple of Ugris so they could keep watch on it. Benjamin located a two story building that suited their needs; there were several homeless individuals inside, and they started a fire in a fireplace on the second story.
Akora took the opportunity to converse with the homeless men; they all reeked of alcohol and were in poor shape, although they had clearly been warriors in the past. He learned they had been dishonored after being captured instead of dying in battle, and when the light from the fire caught their dirty, worn tabards just right he noticed they bore the Grim Sea clan sigil. The nominal leader was an old, grizzled warrior named Kolskegg; he told Akora that his clan was the oldest and at one time had been the most powerful in Skara, but Torsten’s raids had nearly wiped them out. Once several hundred strong, the clan was a shadow of its former self, with only a few dozen still respected and their strength a fraction of what it once was. The few that had encountered Torsten’s fleet and survived were dishonored and had been cast out for not dying in battle; they were scattered throughout the area, with some having ended up in Ringsted on the Isle of Merkigil. Sympathizing with their plight, Akora gave Kolskegg two gold, a long axe, and a number of half helms with the promise that the party would join the Grim Sea clan in seeking vengeance against Torsten. He requested Kolskegg gather the dishonored members of the clan and that they take up residence at the Spectrum Creature Inn.
The night was quiet and they did not observe any activity at the temple, but in the morning both Akora and Emmerick were feeling worse; the wounds they had sustained from the undead were getting worse, and they were not healing. Akora attempted to will himself to health; he strained himself, however, and ended up sharting himself. The others didn’t hear it, but the stench gave him away. Drawing on his herbalism knowledge, Benjamin sought out an apothecary that carried the ingredients he needed to be able to concoct a healing potion to cure Akora and Emmerick’s infections. Calissa took the opportunity to craft additional spells to both cure infections and to heal, although she did not need to cast them. The party took the opportunity to rest, with Akora and Emmerick drinking potions Benjamin had brewed that sped up the healing process. Benjamin and Bieito discussed what kinds of sexually transmitted diseases elves would have, with Benjamin insisting there was something called “crystal dick”, which caused quartz crystals to grow on their penis.
To blend into the Hoscan community, Akora cut his hair into a crude mohawk and had let his stubble grow to better hide his features; assuming he didn’t speak, he would be passable as a Hoscan. Bieito, meanwhile, set out to the building the skull had been heading towards the previous night; he was able to sense residual necromantic and wizardry magic in the vicinity. He then walked around the Temple of Ugris, picking up on a wizardry magic presence, before heading to Jarl Orrin’s tower, where he sensed magic energies similar to what he had felt near the first building. He also took the opportunity to stop by a local fletcher and replenish his stock of bodkin arrows, which he was running low on.
Bieito returned to the others and informed them of what he had picked up on; the agreed to visit the tower again and seek audience with the jarl. Upon arriving at the tower everyone but Akora attempted to talk the guard into admitting them; they were having little luck until Akora wandered over, handing him a couple silver, while Bieito observed Akora was a strange reverse beggar. After a couple more bribes the guard allowed the party to enter, although they had to leave their weapons in the antechamber before entering the main hall to meet with Orrin, although Bieito followed him back in.
Orrin was seated at a table at the end of the hall with his advisors, discussing the issue of succession of King Gudrik. A cloaked figure with his hood up stood along the wall behind Orrin; none of the party recognized him, but Bieito sensed the same necromantic and wizardry energy he had felt from where the skull had been moving towards. Unsure of the proper etiquette for greeting the jarl, Bieito suggested peeing on a dog, to which Emmerick responded by dragging him out to the antechamber.
They greeted the jarl and filled him in on their purpose for interrupting; they were seeking a stolen ring that had belonged to Benjamin’s mother and had learned that Orrin purchased. Orrin confirmed as much, informing them he had gifted it to the prophet Arnvid of the Cult of Ugris. He was reluctant to have it returned, but understood their desire to retrieve it. They thanked him and departed, heading to the temple to visit Arnvid.
On the way to the temple Benjamin found a pack of dogs and managed to tame a couple, who then began following him and Cane. The party arrived at the temple about a half hour before sunset, and were allowed to meet with Arnvid, although their weapons had to stay outside his chambers. Benjamin instructed his new pack to wait outside and to not eat anything, particularly the tapestries; the dogs cocked their heads and whined, then began licking themselves. When they entered Arnvid’s quarters they found a man in his early 60s, spry for his age, and floating about six inches above the ground as he meditated.
Akora apologized for the interruption, and recounted why they sought him out. Arnvid confirmed that he had been given the ring, although it had disappeared a week and a half earlier. Benjamin began lashing out in frustration, kicking and hitting things, but was petrified by Bieito’s threat to force him to stop. Arnvid spoke of a cloaked figure; Emmerick thought it might be Morden, but Arnvid did not recognize the name, although his physical description matched. Bieito, having gotten a look at the cloaked figure advising the jarl, told them he believed that it was Morden. The party recounted their previous encounters with Morden: when he had broken into the crypt and frozen Akora, how he had led them on a long chase before escaping, and his theft of a book from Calissa’s temple in Aramore. Calissa also spoke about the dream/vision she had had, feeling Morden may have been one of the figures in it. Troubled to hear this and what he could potentially do with the ring, Arnvid offered to assist the party however possible. He believed that Orrin was working with Morden in his play for succeeding Gudrik, something Akora believed he could counter by offering an alliance with Recco. Based on legends, Arnvid believed Morden had remained in Skara seeking information about another powerful artifact, although what and where it was were sketchy at best. After a short discussion, during which they could hear Benjamin’s pack snoring outside, they decided the best course of action was to immediately present the evidence against Morden to Orrin. Although concerned about their ability to fight, as they were still drained from the fight with the undead the previous night, they didn’t want to give Morden an opportunity to escape.
Still floating on a cushion of air, Arnvid accompanied the party to the jarl’s tower; rarely appearing in public, his appearance and floating drawing a small crowd. The same guard was on duty, and Akora greeted him with an enthusiastic handshake; the guard laughed and reminded him that he had five children to take care of. Akora gave him five more silver coins, and the party was allowed to enter the tower again. Akora managed to persuade the guards to the main hall to allow them to enter carrying weapons by informing them of the accusations they were going to level against Morden.
Akora apologized for interrupting the jarl again and detailed what they knew about Morden and their belief that he had stolen the ring from Arnvid. He also offered an alliance with Recco in exchange for the ring. Troubled by this development, Orrin questioned Morden, who took off his cloak; he was not wearing the ring and when questioned about it did not deny having taken it, informing them that it was now far away from Skara. Orrin ordered his guards to seize Morden, but before they could he teleported himself out of the tower. Frustrated that he had again escaped, they were given a lead by Orrin. Morden had narrowed down the location of the item he was seeking to a place four days to the northeast; Orrin was unsure what the place was, and had been planning to provide Morden assistance in retrieving the item in exchange for helping him take the throne. He believed that Temba Open-Arms at the Spectrum Creature would be able to put the party in touch with someone who knew that area well enough to act as a guide. They thanked him for the help, and Akora kept the offer of an alliance with Recco intact. Seeing through his disguise, Orrin did mention the issues with Kandari oppression, something Akora said he regretted although he was only half-Kandari.
On the way back to the Spectrum Creature Benjamin purchased a small cart for his pack to ride in and for the party to use to carry extra equipment, and Emmerick split the cost with him. Upon returning to the inn they consulted with Temba; she pointed them to a booth in the corner, telling them that Jalad Far-Travel was the best ranger she knew and would be their best bet. She also thanked them for sending Kolskegg and the other dishonored men, appreciating the business, although she wished they had made them take a bath first.
The party greeted Jalad, informing her of where they were trying to go. She questioned whether it would be dangerous; Akora confirmed it would be very dangerous, concerned she wouldn’t take the job. She responded that she wasn’t afraid of the danger, it was a question of how much she would charge for her services. Akora requested they negotiate a price on the road, producing four gold to show they would be able to pay, and she accepted the job, informing them she would need an hour to get her horse and gear ready.
Body Count: None! One session with no workplace deaths!
Baller Moment of the Week: Benjamin & Bieito’s speculation about elven STDs.
Fuckup of the Week: Akora sharting himself.
Running Body Count: 112 humans, 50 creatures, 72 undead