18-19 Aslala of the year 73
After the fight with Lady Kurral’s forces, Calissa examined the necklace Emmerick had found, Bieito, and Benjamin to determine how Lady Kurral had been able to tell they had teleported across the continent. There were no active spells on the necklace and Bieito was no longer beacon marked, but on Benjamin she found a blood mark; it operated like a beacon marker, but instead of being on an object was tied to his blood. Sileth was able to dispel the blood mark and use the connection to get a glimpse of the other end; he saw Lady Kurral and an unidentified younger man with white hair, and he told them they were coming.
The party and Benjamin’s father gathered as much as they could carry and relocated to a nearby cave Benjamin had previously used for smuggling. After Bieito fell asleep the others discussed what to do with him; Sileth told them there was a family resemblance between Bieito and the unidentified man he had seen, and they seriously considered killing Bieito in his sleep. Sileth in particular was concerned about the potential for Bieito to turn on the party and that the apparent family member might corrupt Bieito further. Ultimately they opted to continue on without him, leaving a note stating they were going to deal with Lady Kurral, and had Cane sign it with a paw print.
They stopped for the night in the village Ravenlem about 30 miles from Lady Kurral’s keep, and rented a room in the Broken Lute tavern. While the evening was uneventful, that night they awoke to the sound of dragging chains outside their room. A ghost passed through the door, imploring them for help; his name was Hayward, and his spirit had been bound by a man named Piker. He warned them that Piker was close to becoming a lich, and that he would be visited by three spirits that night. They needed to get him to willingly give up the ring he wore, and they should attempt to redeem his soul before he completed the process of becoming a lich. Sileth cast a cantrip on the necklace Emmerick had found to give it the appearance of magical properties while in actuality it possessed none.
The party found Piker’s manor with little difficulty, but it was surrounded by an iron fence topped with spikes and the grounds were patrolled by zombies. Emmerick attempted and failed to climb the fence, impaling his hand on one of the spikes, before letting Benjamin unlock the gate. They dealt with several of the closer zombies before gaining access to the house, although Benjamin was bitten by one from behind. A decapitated zombie head did hit a cow, which mooed.
They wound their way to the master bedroom, where they found a tome detailing Piker’s necromantic experiments. Sileth managed to slip the ring from Piker’s hand as he slept, then woke him and offered not destroy the tome, along with the necklace, in exchange for the party taking the ring. Piker refused, and when Sileth threatened him a demon appeared behind him.
The demon attacked Emmerick first, poisoning his blood with a spell, and Benjamin nearly lost another of his dogs when it missed Piker. Piker and the demon gave the party the opportunity to retreat, but Sileth refused. The party was able to deal little damage to the demon and Sileth used telekinesis to throw Piker out of the second story window; Benjamin was hit by Emmerick when a strike missed, and Calissa was possessed by the demon and forced to attack Emmerick. Sileth managed to kill Piker by telekinetically throwing him onto the fence spikes, then with great difficulty banished the demon who had been thoroughly routing the party.
When they searched the house they found a number of books, including Hunted by the Phantoms, Animals & Necromancers, and How to Cook Brains, from which Benjamin tore out the section on head cheese for his own use. There was also a book detailing the different fiber and weave techniques of Bargas cultures, which was extremely obscure knowledge and of little use. Emmerick found head cheese in the kitchen and disposed of it instead of giving it to Benjamin, then made himself a jerky and cheese sandwich. In Piker’s tome Sileth found references to Piker having been orphaned by Kandari slavers, taken in by the previous Lady Kurral, and raised by her until she passed away, at which point he swore to defeat death by any means necessary.
The party located a basement filled with dead bodies, which they closed up again, and they burned all the necromantic items they were able to locate. Benjamin brought his sister to the manor to give them her take on the area; she told them the house was rarely visited, but that Lady Kurral kept a close watch on the area. She, much like her father, was quite cold towards Benjamin, and he appeared to be better liked by the party than his family. The rest of the night was quiet, but in the morning they saw a group approaching the manor.
Body Count: Piker, 5 zombies.
Baller Moment of the Week: None; going full murder hobo negated any baller moments.
Fuckup of the Week: Going full murder hobo, not retreating when given an opportunity.
Running Body Count: 125 humans, 56 creatures, 81 undead, 1 demon